Australian Open Men's Draw Opening Round Predictions: Aussie O'Connell In For a Battle

Tennis expert Mike Spector picks his three best bets of the opening round in the Men's Australian Open draw.
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Australian Open Men's Draw Opening Round Predictions: Aussie O'Connell In For a Battle

Our Men’s Australian Open picks got off to a profitable 2-1 start, cashing Carlos Alcaraz’s straight-set victory at plus odds and the over total games in the Berrettini-Nakashima match when the underdog pushed the Italian to four sets. 

With today’s bets, we get creative once again with prop bets as many first-round matchups have steep moneyline odds.

We preview our best bets from the men’s draw in the opening round of the Australian Open.

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Jannik Sinner to beat Joao Sousa 3 Sets to None (-235) (Bet $235 to win $100)

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Jannik Sinner is a -4000 moneyline favorite to win this match, as oddsmakers are not giving Sousa much of a chance. Thus, in a match Sinner is not likely to lose, the -235 odds to win this match in straight sets are more than fair. 

It is worth noting that Sousa won the only match between these two, a three-set victory in the quarterfinals of the 2019 Halle Open. However, that match was played on grass, and Sinner was a young 17-year old. Sinner has matured dramatically in the last three years and thrust himself into serious consideration to contend for Grand Slam titles. He enters this match on a seven-match winning streak and has four hard-court titles in 2021 alone. 

Sinner did not drop a set in any of his three ATP Cup matches and comes into the Australian Open in the best possible form. Conversely, Sousa has lost 23 of his last 24 ATP main draw matches and will be overwhelmed again in this one.

Christopher O’Connell vs. Hugo Gaston OVER 37.5 games (-115) (Bet $115 to win $100)

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This is the first career meeting between these two players, so there is not a lot of data to predict based upon, but this match has all the makings of a five-set classic. Naturally, there will be a lot of energy from the crowd spurring on their countrymate, O’Connell, who oddsmakers have listed as a slight favorite. But his -125 moneyline odds also suggest we should be in for a grudge match tonight. 

While Gaston is slowly earning the stereotype of a clay-court specialist, there is no denying his struggles on the hard surface lately. He enters this match on a five-match losing streak, while O’Connell made the Round of 32 after two initial wins in the Sydney International.

Though Gaston has struggled, he does not go down without a fight. Eight of his last ten matches have gone three sets, so we see each player winning at least one set in this match. Each of O’Connell’s last ten ATP main draw matches has gone over the projected total. With this match not likely to be concluded in three sets, we like the over 37.5 games to cash. 

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Daniel Evans to Beat David Goffin 3 Sets to 1 (+240) (Bet $100 to win $240)

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This is a tricky first-round matchup for Evans, who draws veteran David Goffin. Evans won head-to-head meetings with Goffin, with one straight-set and one three-set victory. Goffin is likely a bigger underdog than usual in this game as he has injury questions entering today, coming off an ankle injury in the quarterfinal match in Sydney against Andy Murray. Evans has won five straight-set matches in the events leading up to this Grand Slam, but we respect Goffin’s game enough to at least take one set in this match. Evans has covered the game spread in his two matches against Goffin, but neither came in a Grand Slam event, where we expect Goffin’s game to rise. 

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Mike Spector brings unmatched knowledge and insight into the game of football, and more importantly the process of betting on NFL football. Mike is the #2 ranked expert in FantasyPros' NFL betting contest

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