Tennis best bets for ATP Shanghai – Thursday, October 12
There isn’t much time left in the 2023 tennis season, but the Asian swing brings us some really big tournaments. This week, the men are in action for a 1000-level event, which is the biggest a tournament can be outside of the four Grand Slams. I’ll be focusing on Shanghai with my tennis best bets for the week. So, keep reading for my plays for Thursday, October 12 (with some starting on Wednesday, October 11 in the United States).
Ben Shelton vs. Sebastian Korda
This is an interesting battle between two talented young Americans, and both of them are playing extremely well coming into this match. However, I believe this price is a little off and that Shelton deserves to be a favorite in this spot. While Korda has a more complete all-around game than Shelton, the lefty’s forehand and serve will be the two biggest weapons on the court here. That will be hard for Korda to overcome unless he plays a flawless match in terms of point construction. But Korda is a player that keeps things calm and collected on the court, and I think Shelton’s on-court personality could get under his skin a bit. Shelton is going to be yelling and playing with tons of passion, and that can be annoying for a guy that just wants to quietly go about his business. I also think Korda could struggle to keep his cool when he is serving, as there’s a lot of pressure not to get broken when you’re facing an elite server like Shelton. And that generally results in nervy service games, which would give Shelton an opportunity to pick up a few breaks. If that happens, the young American will cruise to a win. So, I’m backing the 21-year-old to prevail in what should be a fun, competitive match. At this point, Shelton has proven that he is a big-match player. Korda hasn’t done that.
Bet: Shelton ML (-110 – 2 units)
Ugo Humbert vs. Andrey Rublev – Friday
I had Rublev to cover 2.5 games against Tommy Paul last round and he came away with a 7-5, 7-5 victory. Now, I like him to cover that same spread against Humbert, and it just boils down to Rublev’s form. It almost feels like it came out of nowhere, but I believe Rublev has played some of the best tennis of his career this week. In fact, Rublev’s 6-3, 6-0 win over Adrian Mannarino in the Round of 32 might have been the best match I’ve ever seen him play. And he backed it up with a good performance against Paul. Of course, playing a big server like Humbert gives him a smaller margin for error. But I think Rublev is really dialed in from the baseline, where he should have a massive advantage over the Frenchman. The only thing I’m worried about is Rublev covering in a match that could easily have a tiebreaker or two. But I keep going back to the fact that Humbert occasionally gives away service games, especially in big matches. With this being a quarter-final matchup of a 1000-level event, this would definitely qualify as a big match. At some point, I think the magnitude of the match will manifest itself in the form of a poorly played game — or a few — from Humbert. And that should make the difference. This is also a revenge spot for Rublev, who lost to Humbert in a tight three-set match last week. I trust a top-10 player to make adjustments more than a guy like Humbert.
Bet: Rublev -2.5 Games (-130 – 2 units)
I gave away Hubert Hurkacz to win his quarter at +600 in my column for Wednesday, October 4. The Pole is now one win away from cashing that ticket, and he happens to be a big favorite over Fabian Marozsan in the quarterfinals. I’m personally going to let the play ride, as I have had a very profitable season and can live with losing the unit. However, I wanted to note that you can get Marozsan at +205 to win this match. So, you can set yourself up with a nice guaranteed profit by betting the underdog here.
2023 Overall Record: 295-271 (+46.71 units)