This is the premiere match of the day as it pits the 2014 US Open champion against a player tabbed by many to have a big future in tennis. Both men possess massive serves and powerful groundstrokes. As well as Cilic moves, Kyrgios is the faster player. Cilic has more experience and tactical discipline. That leaves this match coming down to either man’s return of serve or to how tiebreak sets will unfold. Kyrgios’ win over Berdych should provide good sparing for Cilic as both Cilic and Berdych play what can be described as big man tennis.
My Prediction: Marin Cilic d. Nick Kyrgios 7-6, 6-3
It is fitting that Rio would host two South American players in the final even if Cuevas and Pella prevented a Nadal Thiem rematch. I do not have a ton to say about this match. Pella is 5 years younger and had the earlier/quicker semifinal win. If Cuevas has a physical or mental letdown after beating the King of Clay, Pella will win. If Cuevas can harness his top level tennis, the Uruguayan will win.
My Prediction: Guido Pella d. (a tired) Pablo Cuevas 7-5, 6-2
A battle between two veterans from the US is not what I would have predicted for the championship round when the draw was released. Juan Martin del Potro reaching the semifinal round in his first event back on tour in quite some time is a big story coming out of Delray. Still, the winner here will gain much needed ranking points and momentum for the remainder of 2016. Both men serve well. Querrey has the more orthodox, by today’s standards, power forehand game. Ram plays more angles and volleys than Querrey will. I think Ram will use those angles to his benefit and reach his career high ranking with an unexpected title.
My Prediction: Rajeev Ram d. Sam Querrey 6-4, 7-6