U.S. Open Day 10 tennis predictions, picks and best bets: Jessica Pegula eyes upset of world No. 1 Iga Swiatek
Quarterfinal action at the U.S. Open will wrap up on Wednesday. Rafael Nadal isn’t a part of it, as he was upset by Frances Tiafoe in the fourth round. Tiafoe moves on to face Andrey Rublev, while Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner are also aiming for a semifinal spot on the men’s side. In the women’s draw, world No. 1 continues her campaign against Jessica Pegula and Aryna Sabalenka is opposing Karolina Pliskova. I have U.S. Open outright bets on both Pegula and Sabalenka.
My best bets record stands at 18-9 through nine-plus days, so let’s keep the momentum going with my Wednesday picks!
Andrey Rublev ML over Frances Tiafoe (-112)
What will Tiafoe do for an encore after defeating Nadal? It’s never easy to follow up such a monumental victory with more success in the very next match, and Tiafoe has never advanced past the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam. Rublev never has, either, but he has been here five times and four of his losses have come to Nadal, Daniil Medvedev (twice), and Stefanos Tsitsipas. His most recent slam quarterfinal appearance saw him come within a fifth-set tiebreaker of advancing (lost to Marin Cilic at the French Open this spring). Rublev is knocking on the door and this time he looks poised to break through it. The world No. 11 has played awesome tennis the last two rounds, outlasting Denis Shapovalov in five sets and then crushing an in-form Cameron Norrie 6-4, 6-4, 6-4. It was fun for Tiafoe while it lasted, but I think this is the end of the road.
Jessica Pegula +4 games over Iga Swiatek (-125)
Clay courts ain’t walkin’ through that door for Swiatek. It’s not like the top seed is a slouch on hard courts, but she isn’t the same player that she is at the French Open — where the Pole is a two-time champion. After winning her second French Open title this spring, Swiatek went just 6-4 in 10 matches leading into the U.S. Open. She required three sets to beat Jule Niemeier on Monday. Pegula is on a roll and knows she can take down Swiatek. The New York native is 1-2 in the head-to-head series and 1-1 on hard courts, which is more reason to be encouraged. For the sake of my futures bet, let’s hope for an outright upset engineered by Pegula. When it comes to this specific matchup, though, a +4 spread at -125 has great value. I just can’t see Swiatek winning this one easily given their respective current levels of play.
Aryna Sabalenka ML over Karolina Pliskova (-133)
Sabalenka was down 6-2, 5-1 to Kaia Kanepi in the second round and even faced two match points. Somehow the Belarusian pulled off an incredible comeback. When you survive something like that so early in the tournament, sometimes it propels you to future success. So far that is exactly what has happened with Sabalenka, who now finds herself in the quarterfinals following a very impressive win over Danielle Collins on Monday. The only concern with her is serving, but she has double-faulted a modest 10 times in her last two matches; that’s an average of just two per set. Those are numbers she can work with. Pliskova is coming off a three-hour and two-minute struggle with Victoria Azarenka and before that she needed hours and 26 minutes to get past Belinda Bencic–both three-set affairs. The Czech may not be running on full in the quarterfinals.