The ATP and WTA are going full steam ahead towards the clay after a few weeks on hardcourts in New York, and there are great matchups abound on day one. We take a look at options to consider for your fantasy tennis rosters on DraftKings.
Jannik Sinner ($9,900)
Sinner’s opponent, Benoit Paire ($5,900), is one of my favorite players to watch, but it’s because of his on-court antics as opposed to his performances. Paire didn’t play in the US Open due to coronavirus and had to retire from his first-round match in the Cincinnati Masters due to illness (supposedly not related to his positive COVID test). Safe to say, he’s going to be out of sorts on Monday, and Sinner has been playing on clay for the past week. He hasn’t looked his best, either, but he should cruise past Paire, who is a shaky server. It doesn’t hurt that he’s playing in front of his home fans in Italy, either.
Lorenzo Sonego ($9,600)
Sonego is a skilled clay court player, and yet another Italian who should get a boost playing in Italy. He spent the entire lockdown playing exhibition clay-court tennis in Italy, winning all 10 matches he appeared in. He plays Nikoloz Basilashvili, who is all out of sorts at the moment and looking absolutely atrocious on the court. Sonego’s a big server, which should help him get some bonus points for aces and limit the amount of games he loses. In addition to that, Basilashvili has been known to tank sets, so there’s always a chance Sonego could go for that perfect set bonus.
Also Consider: Elise Mertens ($10,700)
Value Flex Options
Hubert Hurkacz ($8,600)
Hurkacz has a clear edge in this one, having played two clay court matches last week. He’s also going up against a player in Dan Evans who hasn’t played on clay since last year’s French Open in May. Evans is a marginally better tennis player, but he’s on a surface he’ll have to adjust to and comes in playing shaky tennis. Because of that, I think there’s a clear edge towards the Polish youngster. He may not blow Evans away, but he’ll win, and that’s ultimately what you want here.
Christian Garin ($8,100)
This is another match I think may be close, but Garin is an absolute beast on clay and should not have an issue getting past Borna Coric, who is so-so on the surface (6-6 in 2020, including exhibitions) and hasn’t played it of late. Coric lost to someone named Alexander Lazarov (No. 538 in the world) on clay during the shutdown. One of the world’s best clay-courters should handle him at a nice price of $8.1K.
Alexander Bublik ($5,700)
Don’t let his opponent’s name fool you — Bublik has a great shot of winning this match. At $5.7K, the second-cheapest price on the slate, you have to take a stab. Cilic is a player that excels on hard surfaces, but has never been great on clay, going 0-3 this year and owning just a 14-12 record over the past three years. Both players come in with shaky form, so I truly think anything could happen on what always proves to be the most unpredictable surface in tennis. In tournaments, Bublik is worth a shot.
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