The world number 27 and Russia’s Aslan Karatsev faces Kazakh Alexander Bublik in the third round of the 2021 Madrid Open on Thursday, May 6. Get the live streaming options of this Aslan Karatsev v Alexander Bublik match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Aslan Karatsev v Alexander Bublik Head to Head
No previous matches have been played between Karatsev and Bublik before this third round encounter in Madrid.
Karatsev Juggernaut Marches On
When Karatsev played his first match of the season in the Australian Open qualifiers, he was ranked ranked 114th in the world and a rank outside to even qualify for the main draw of the season’s first Grand Slam.
Nearly four months on, he has become a toast of the tennis world, smashing his way to an Australian Open semifinal and a maiden ATP title in the process. What’s made it doubly satisfying is his performances on clay have been very satisfying as well.
Unlike fellow Russian Daniil Medvedev, Karatsev has shown no signs of aversion to the slower, red dirt, and that was on display yet again when he took on clay-court specialist and last season’s Rome Masters finalist, Diego Schwartzman.
Schwartzman grabbed the first set easily and was 2-0 up in the second before Karatsev mounted a huge comeback. He overturned that lead by breaking his Argentine opponent and levelling it up 2-2, and then again as Schwartzman looked to serve to stay in the set.
With the momentum shifted in his favour, Karatsev then was quick to crash into the world number nine’s party with back to back breaks and try as much as he did, Schwartzman failed to get anything back. The Russian came through 2-6, 6-4, 6-1 to emulate his best Masters 1000 showing.
Can he now go one better?
Bublik Shocks Shapovalov
It’s not been the best clay court season for Bublik, which is line with his career performances on red dirt anyway.
But a win over a fellow struggler on clay, Denis Shapovalov has translated into a third round spot in Madrid, already his best showing in Masters competitions on clay. He needed two hours and 22 minutes alright, and was stretched to three sets, but won that cagey affair 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 in the end.
There wasn’t much to choose between the two players but it was Shapovalov’s issues with his unforced errors that aided Bublik in his endeavour. In the end, Bublik got himself 14 chances to break his opponent and managed three of them while getting broken twice in return.
Another win here will help Bublik emulate his top performance in Masters 1000 across his career, following his quarterfinal appearance at the Miami Open earlier this season. Against Karatsev, however, those chances look bleak.
Karatsev v Bublik Prediction and Tip
Karatsev is understandably a favourite here, 1/3 to win it, and 5/6 to do that in straight sets and we believe that’s how things would go for him here.