Kei Nishikori vs. Dominic Thiem 2018 French Open Tennis Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction
Thiem vs. Nishikori
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TV: Tennis, NBC
Kei Nishikori and Dominic Thiem meet in the fourth round of the 2018 tennis French Open.
Kei Nishikori is coming off a straight sets win over Gilles Simon that took 25 games to decide. In the victory, Nishikori won 77 percent of his first serve points and 65 percent of his second serve points. Nishikori got 70 percent of his first serves in play and wasn’t broken once in his third round victory. It was probably the most complete match we’ve seen from Nishikori this season. Nishikori has now own 14 of his last 19 sets played and is showing that those injuries that bugged him earlier in the season may be a thing of the past. Nishikori is moving well out there, hitting the ball with confidence and just dominated a former top-10 player in his home tournament. If this continues, it won’t be long before Nishikori is back where he was in 2016, making consistent deep tournament runs. Nishikori hopes to make his eighth career grand slam quarterfinal and the third in the French Open. Nishikori has won six of his last seven matches on clay court.
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Dominic Thiem is coming off a four sets win over Matteo Berrettini that took 39 games to decide. In the victory, Thiem won 73 percent of his first serve points and 57 percent of his second serve points. Thiem cruised rather easily in his third round victory, winning 67 percent of his service points and breaking on five of his seven chances. Thiem has established great form since winning the Lyon Open and is making light work at the one grand slam he’s had success at. However, Thiem will have to clean up the 41 unforced errors he had if he hopes to make an even deeper run here. Thiem hopes to make his third career grand slam quarterfinal, all three would have taken place in the French Open. Thiem has won seven straight matches on clay court.
These two have played twice, and Nishikori won both meetings in straight sets. The matches took place in the 2016 Rome Masters and the 2015 Halle Open.
It’s tough to bet against Thiem in his current form and the fact he’s established some consistency at this event the last couple of years. However, Nishikori has not only beat him in the two meetings, but he’s a player who is starting to find his confidence and is the more skilled player when he has his confidence going. Nishikori is covering a lot of ground and usually has the match on his racket with his shotmaking ability.
I like Nishikori to reach the quarters.