Hubert Hurkacz vs Aslan Karatsev
October 13, 2021 2:00 pm EDT
A big swinging battle awaits as the higher ranked, Hubert Hurkacz, meets the resurging Russian, Aslan Karatsev, in the fourth round here at the BNP Paribas Open on Wednesday, October 13th, 2021.
Will Hubert Hurkacz continue to play his amazing game and get very far into basically every tournament he plays in, or will Aslan Karatsev continue to build on his game as he has found his form again after a couple months of sub-par performances?
Aslan Karatsev cruised through his match against the high ranked, Denis Shapovalov, beating him in 2 easy sets 7-5/6-2. This was a dominant performance by the Russian who was good on his serve and this allowed him to play with freedom on the return game. Aslan came out ready to make a statement that he is back and is working hard to ensure his efforts in the first half of the year do not go forgotten. Aslan has incredible power and speed of shots, but he meets another powerful opponent in Hubert now.
Hubert also dominated in his third round match, beating the in form and crowd-favourite, Frances Tiafoe, in 2 very easy sets 6-3/6-2. Frances could have kept things a bit tighter on another occasion, but Hubert was just too good on Monday. Hubert has a huge serve which works well in these hard court conditions, and he is able to rally for long times which is not always expected from a player of his stature. Hubert will want to ensure his serve and return are at their best now that he meets Aslan.
Both players have met 2 times before, with both of them having beat each other once. They most recently met just a couple weeks ago in San Diego where Aslan won in 3 sets. That was a very important win for the Russian because it showed he was on an upward trajectory again, but it is going to be a tight match here as this is a bigger tournament. Hubert dominated against Frances, but so did Aslan against Denis. I expect for a tight match, but Aslan seems to be in better form this week and he might just cause the upset.