Action on the opening day of the Laver Cup 2019 will see three brilliant singles matches and a doubles encounter being played for a point apiece as the Team Europe looks to defend their title against Team World. Latest Dominic Thiem v Denis Shapovalov & Fabio Fognini v Jack Sock tips and predictions with their previews along with others can be found below.Get the best odds for the Laver Cup 2019 with 888Sport here.
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Dominic Thiem v Denis Shapovalov Preview
Their previous two matches had led to Dominic Thiem beating Denis Shapovalov both times, including their most recent one at the Rogers Cup in Montreal earlier this year. And now Thiem has a task on his hands, to avoid becoming the first Team Europe player to lose the first singles of the competition ever.
Thiem’s inconsistencies, especially outside clay could be of concern but the big question is if Denis Shapovalov can take advantage of those issues. The Austrian will be coming into this tournament on the back of a first round defeat at the US Open, losing to Thomas Fabbiano before going down in the Davis Cup as well.
That loss was even worse as he was stunned by 163rd-ranked Finnish player Emil Ruusuvuori.
On the other hand, Shapovalov goes into the match without much to lose, but he would have a point or two to prove. He did better than Thiem at the US Open series, with a semi-final presence at Winston-Salem and a US Open third round appearance against Gael Monfils.
What this could allows is Shapovalov to get going early and take advantage of Thiem’s slightly lower confidence coming into this encounter. Interestingly, it comes as no surprise that Shapovalov is a very small favourite here.
Tip: Shapovalov to win: 8/11 with 888Sport
Fabio Fognini v Jack Sock Preview
This is the third time that Fabio Fognini and Jack Sock would be facing off with both players having one match apiece in the past. However, they last featured in a tie in 2017 and Fognini was a winner in that one in conditions similar to these – indoor hard-courts.
It will be a debut for Fognini at the Laver Cup and that is the one advantage Sock has over the Italian given the disparity otherwise. The Italian is a Masters winner and was in the top 10 till not so recently. On the other hand, Sock is more a doubles specialist and currently ranked outside the top 200.
And while Fognini did lose in the round one at the US Open – going down to tall-serving Reilly Opelka – there were quarterfinals at the Los Cabos and Rogers Cup before that.
It comes as no surprise that Sock is getting played on day one for the one-pointer given his singles issue but if can try and push Fognini, it could make for an interesting third set, which is more of a tie-breaker than an actual set.
Tip: Fognini to win: 8/15 (888Sport)