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Ben Shelton vs Aslan Karatsev Prediction – Tennis Picks 10-22-2023

Ben Shelton vs Aslan Karatsev
2023-10-22 10:30:00 EDT
The Line: Ben Shelton -110 / Aslan Karatsev -110
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American Next Gen star Ben Shelton will face Russia’s Aslan Karatsev in the final of the 2023 Japan Open. The match will be played on Sunday, October 22, 2023.

And there we have it. Ben Shelton, in his first full season on the ATP Tour, has conquered another first, reaching a maiden ATP final at the 2023 Japan Open Tennis Championships. The big-serving young American prevailed in a near three-hour thriller in the semfinal against compatriot Marcos Giron. Shelton responded superbly from the disappointment of dropping the first set in a tiebreak despite serving for it at 5-4 up. And he clawed his way back from the brink in the second set, overcoming a 2-5 deficit to level the match in another tiebreaker. The 21-year-old grabbed the only break of the third set to seal his place in Sunday’s showpiece.

Meeting him there will be 30-year-old Aslan Karatsev who knows a thing or two about a breakthrough. The Russian famously put together a barnstorming year in 2021 that many tennis fans remember fondly. Karatsev achieved some incredible milestones of his own two seasons ago becoming the first man in tennis history to reach the semifinal of his first Grand Slam tournament. Less than a month later he would hoist his first ATP 500 title in Dubai. Sadly for Karatsev, he’s never found that level until this week, in which he has swept aside the likes of Frances Tiafoe, Alex de Minaur, and the unheralded giant-killer Shintaro Mochizuki, who it has to be said made Karatsev’s path relatively comfortable.

This should be an entertaining contest whichever way you look at it. Karatsev with his devastating power and high rally tolerance has been tough to breach. Shelton with his humongous serve, and wonderful use of the slice complement his all-round game. The one and only time they played each other was at the US Open last month where Shelton won in four routine sets. But Karatsev is playing with renewed vitality this week and he’s only dropped his serve once all week, and that against some high-quality returners. How Shelton handles the nerves early on will be critical, but we’re expecting a totally different Karatsev here and a different outcome from their match in New York.

Joe Kiemen's Free Pick: Aslan Karatsev in three sets

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Joe Kiemen

Joe Kiemen has been writing about sports for over 5 years and focuses on using data analysis/modeling to find profitable betting opportunities.

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