Novak Djokovic vs Holger Rune
2023-11-12 16:00:00 EDT
The Line: Novak Djokovic -500 / Holger Rune +350
(Get latest betting odds)
Novak Djokovic will kick off his title defense against ATP Finals debutant Holger Rune. The match will be played on Sunday, November 12, 2023.
After going undefeated to win last year’s ATP Finals and amassing a record paycheck during the week, Novak Djokovic is already setting sight on another slice of history. Djokovic will break a two-man tie with Roger Federer if he wins his seventh ATP Finals crown next weekend. But he’ll need to navigate a way out of a very challenging group. The Serbian will begin his campaign against a man who has become a pebble in his show, Holger Rune. But the magnitude of Rune’s task here cannot be overstated. Djokovic hasn’t lost a match since Wimbledon, which was almost four months ago, winning 18 matches in a row across all levels.
Holger Rune, meanwhile, is making his ATP Finals debut. The Danish star was the last man to qualify for the event, holding off the challenge of Hubert Hurkacz. Rune was the player in most danger of dropping out of the world’s Top 8 following his catastrophic first-round defeat to Roberto Carballes Baena at the US Open. A defeat that had imminent repercussions on French coach Patrick Mouratoglou. Rune, on the advice of his mother, had to fire the Frenchman after it emerged there was a clash of egos with his longtime coach Lars Christensen. Since then, he has appointed Novak Djokovic’s former coach Boris Becker, and the upturn in fortunes has been conspicuous. Rune came out of his slump, winning five matches in his last two tournaments.
Novak Djokovic and Holger Rune are tied at 2-2 in the head-to-head. These two have never played dud affairs, so we expect fireworks here. The addition of Becker, who once served as Djokovic’s coach during a highly productive stint between 2014 and 2016 only spices things up. Rune faced Djokovic not long ago, in Paris-Bercy, the last tournament before the ATP Finals, and stretched him to three sets. In fact, in their four ATP meetings, there has not been a straight-set win by either player. This makes the sets spread a very good avenue to exploit for this match since the bookies are heavily favoring Djokovic in ML. The young Dane is well worth the risk to win a set or cover the overs in games at Evens.