By Jake Davies

  • Three matches to see on Day 5 of Canada Masters
  • Milos Raonic [4] vs Gael Monfils [10]
  • Kevin Anderson vs Stan Wawrinka [2]
  • Grigor Dimitrov vs Kei Nishikori [3]
TORONTO, CANADA – While top seed Novak Djokovic faces Tomas Berdych, we focus on the rest of the quarter-finals as our pick of the Rogers Cup action.

 

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Milos Raonic [4] vs Gael Monfils [10] H2H: 2-2

The Toronto crowd are spoilt for choice on Day 5 of the Canada Masters. The pick of the Quarter-Final matches is Raonic vs Monfils, which will see a contrast in styles as the defensive baseliner plays the aggressive nature of Raonic’s game.

Raonic has made the Quarter-Final or better at 9 of the 11 tournaments he has played in 2016. The drastic improvements in his results has mainly been because of the strides he’s made from a mental standpoint, and secondly, because of his eagerness to finish points at the net. Now with the Canadian’s willingness and efficiency at the net, it enables him to take advantage of the benefits of his aggressive groundstrokes.

Monfils will be seeking to force Raonic to play an extra volley, which can lead to Raonic overpressing when he moves into the forecourt.

The No.14 player in the world, Monfils, is currently on an eight match winning streak, while Raonic has won 12 of his last 14 matches.

Monfils and Raonic are tied in their head-to-head but Raonic has two match wins over the Frenchman in 2016 – both on hard court surfaces.

Prediction: Raonic in 2 sets.

Kevin Anderson vs Stan Wawrinka [2] H2H: 4-4

Since the 2014 season, the head-to-head between Wawrinka and Anderson has become a very different rivalry. They have played some memorable matches in recent memory, none more so than the Indian Wells encounter in 2014. Anderson felt the pressure of having a favourable lead over the Swiss, before tightening up in the 2nd set, but regrouping to win the 3rd set.

Their most recent meeting came at the US Open last year. Anderson was featuring in his first ever Quarter-Final at a major. He was physically exhausted from his exploits in the previous round against Andy Murray, so lost comfortably to Wawrinka in that particular match.

If Anderson can have one of his better serving displays he can make this an interesting quarter-final. His main strategy will be to force short returns from Wawrinka’s backhand and then to finish the points at the net as frequent as possible.

Prediction: Wawrinka in 3 sets.

Grigor Dimitrov vs Kei Nishikori [3] H2H: 2-0 Nishikori

In the last of the must-see matches of the Quarter-Final line up sees Dimitrov and Nishikori go to war for the third time. Nishikori leads the head-to-head 2-0 and is yet to drop a set to the flashy Bulgarian star.

Both Nishikori and Dimitrov struggled to find their rhythm in their opening matches in Toronto. Dimitrov was two points away from losing to Yuichi Sugita, while Nishikori was far from his best against Dennis Novikov in his opening round match.

With that being said, Dimitrov showed some of his better tennis against 17-year-old wild-card Denis Shapovalov in his second round match before beating Ivo Karlovic in straight sets today.

Nishikori should be too consistent from the baseline and has more experience at coming through these important Masters 1000 matches in the last three years.

Prediction: Nishikori in 2 sets.

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