By Jake Davies

  • Roger Federer [2] vs Nick Kyrgios [30]
  • Novak Djokovic [6] vs Richard Gasquet [26]
  • Maria Sharapova [22] vs Jelena Ostapenko [10]
NEW YORK, UNITED STATES –  Four Grand Slam champions in our pick of matches for Day 6 of the US Open as the final third round matches get completed on a busy day at Flushing Meadows.


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Roger Federer [2] vs Nick Kyrgios [20] H2H: Federer leads 2-1

The blockbuster match of the third round sees the No.2 seed and former US Open champion Roger Federer battle the No.30 seed Nick Kyrgios. It is a match-up that has brought some of tennis’ best matches in recent years and this should be no different.

Federer looked okay in his first two rounds against Yoshihito Nishioka in the first round and Benoit Paire in the second round, but neither player had the weaponry to cause Federer sustained grief over a best-of-five format. Kyrgios does.

The Australian has the power and the precision in the first and second serve to be a real nuisance to Federer and that shot alone is something that guides him through matches even when he is not feeling 100% physically. The question is whether the Australian has the discipline and the concentration to hold up his game in the crunch moments and that is where Federer very rarely lets you down.

Expect Kyrgios to push Federer in most of the sets. After all all but one of their previous sets have been played in a tiebreak set, but I do expect Federer to maintain his serving consistency and have a little bit more discipline off the ground to see this match out and make the fourth round.

Prediction: Federer in four sets.


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Novak Djokovic [6] vs Richard Gasquet [26] H2H: Djokovic leads 12-1

Novak Djokovic in the second round of the Western & Southern Open, ATP Cincinnati 2018

Novak Djokovic in the second round of the Western & Southern Open, ATP Cincinnati 2018 | (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Richard Gasquet gets another opportunity in the tennis spotlight as he looks to beat a man who has had the measure of him in 12 of 13 head-to-head matches that spans over 11 years of tennis. A lot was promised in the early years of the Frenchman’s career as many tipped big things for Gasquet, but he has often come up short in the blockbuster matches against tennis’ elite and you have to wonder whether this match will be any different in that respect.

Novak Djokovic has been winning matches the ugly way. Digging deep when the ground-strokes are off and thriving on the adversity, which is very reminiscent of his time as the World No.1 and his dominance, particularly during the 2011 season. The Serbian has had lots of ups and downs along the way, but looks in a better place now and will expect a lot of himself during the remainder of this tournament as the matches get harder and the competition gets even tougher.

Djokovic holds the mental edge and the baseline edge in this match. Gasquet needs to take bigger risks than he usually would feel comfortable taking in order to win the match. The Frenchman has to use the backhand down the line more than the cross-court in order to open the court for himself, but he also has to be well inside the baseline in order to catch the Serbian off guard.

Gasquet is playing a losing battle if he stays at the baseline against perhaps one of the great defensive baseliners in modern tennis. Gasquet has the shot-making ability to cause real problems, but I just don’t feel he will go outside of his usual patterns of play to give himself a better chance of causing the upset.

Prediction: Djokovic in three sets.


Who will win the US Open 2018 Men’s Singles Title?


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Maria Sharapova [22] vs Jelena Ostapenko [10] H2H: Sharapova leads 1-0

Jelena Ostapenko in the Miami Open final, WTA Miami 2018

Mandatory Credit: Photo by USA TODAY Network/Sipa USA/REX/Shutterstock | Jelena Ostapenko in the Miami Open final, WTA Miami 2018

In the third of our matches to see on Day Six of the US Open, two former French Open champions lock horns for the first time since their epic in Rome earlier this year, where Sharapova won 6-7 (6) 6-4 7-5 in a gripping three hour battle under the lights.

It is going to be a case of who can impose their game on the opponent first and the more frequently. Jelena Ostapenko continues to play her high-risk, high-tempo brand of tennis, where she tries to aim for the lines and give her opponent few options in the rally. In recent months she has tried to put a bit more shape on her ground-strokes, but the mentality and the game very much stays the same on the whole.

Maria Sharapova, who has made a career of playing that high level of intensity and using the big ground-strokes to her advantage, but will recognise that she will not have everything under her own control in this match.

Prediction: Ostapenko in three sets


Who will win the US Open 2018 Women’s Singles Title?


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