28 Kevin Anderson vs. 12 Pablo Carreño Busta
This match is not one that was expected, but also features two seeded players. Pablo Carreno Busta being the 12th seed is the numeric favorite, but based upon surface speed one can easily agure that Kevin Anderson is the favorite in this match. My initial thoughts about this match were that it might be 3, 4 or 5 sets, but that Anderson will win due to his bigger serve and more imposing game. Anderson leads their head-to-head 2-0, but only one of their matches is recent. It was as recent as Montreal this summer in which Anderson won 6-3, 7-6 (8-6). That should give Anderson plenty of confidence heading into this match. It also gives Pablo Carreno Busta a good measuring stick of what he will face and what level of play he will need to bring to win. The second set of their Montreal match could have gone either way so Carreno Busta has to feel confident that he can attain the level of play needed to win this match. Therefore, two players know they have realistic chances at victory while also knowing that this is a great opportunity to reach a major final. This could lead to an excellent match.
Pablo Carreno Busta is one of the few Spaniards younger than Rafael Nadal to be making a mark in tennis. The Armada is not as deep as it once was.
Kevin Anderson is coming back from injuries and knows he can play at a high level in majors. He beat Andy Murray at the 2015 US Open and pushed eventual champion Novak Djokovic to 5 sets at the 2015 Wimbledon Championships. Minus an injury plagued 2016, Anderson’s result here makes more sense.
I’d place Anderson as a 60-40 favorite to win. I think his serve will make a difference in terms of free points and in terms of getting out of deficits when facing potenital breaks.
My Prediction: Kevin Anderson d. Pablo Carreno Busta 7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6.