Karatsev vs Paul: who will win in the first round?
On July 24, Aslan Karatsev goes against Tommy Paul in the first round of the Olympic Games in Tokyo. Can the Russian defeat Tommy? Our answer is in the prediction below.
After a successful start to the season, Karatsev went into a downturn. The Russian failed to perform successfully at Roland Garros and lost pretty much all matches on grass. However, there is hope for Aslan's successful performance on hard, because he won the tournament in Dubai on this surface, and also played in the semifinal of the Australian Opens.
The last appearance of Karatsev was at Wimbledon. He was eliminated in the first round of the Major, losing to Jeremy Chardy.
Like all Americans, Paul plays great on hard. However, this season, all of Tommy's achievements have been on clay courts. For example, in Parma, he played in the semifinals. This is his best result in 2021. Paul missed the grass part season; his last appearance was at Roland Garros. In Paris, the American beat Christopher O'Connell in five sets but then lost in four sets to Daniil Medvedev.
In 4 out of the last 7 matches of Karatsev on hard, the maximum number of sets was played.
In 3 of the last 4 matches of the Russian on hard, no more than ten games were played in the first set.
Karatsev is the favourite of the match, but he is not in for an easy win. Paul has a huge serve, and he often shows great focus against the best tennis players in the world. For example, this season Tommy won sets over Daniil Medvedev and Andrei Rublev. At the very least, he will put up a decent fight.
Our prediction is Tommy Paul to win with a handicap of (+4) games.
Prediction: Handicap (+4) to Paul
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Karatsev is not in his best form. In four previous matches, he always lost at least one set to his opponents. It is possible that this will happen again in the first round of the Olympic tournament.
Second wager - total over 20.5 games.