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Tennis News – Ricky’s preview for Thursday in Montreal: De Minaur vs. Kyrgios and Sinner vs. Carreno Busta

Alex de Minaur of Australia will face compatriot Nick Kyrios for the first time. EPA-EFE/DAVE HUNT

By Ricky Dimon

Nick Kyrgios will be trying to maintain his incredible form when he faces fellow Australian Alex de Minaur in the Montreal third round on Thursday. Jannik Sinner and Pablo Carreno Busta are also aiming for a place in the quarterfinals.

Here are my previews and picks for the two matchups.

Nick Kyrgios vs. Alex de Minaur

Kyrgios is an amazing 20-1 in his last 21 tennis matches heading into third-round action at the National Bank Open on Thursday. This stretch includes a runner-up showing at Wimbledon, a title in Washington, D.C., doubles triumphs in D.C. and Atlanta, and victories this week over Sebastian Baez and Daniil Medvedev. After beating Baez 6-4, 6-4, Kyrgios upset the world No. 1 and defending champion 6-7(2), 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday afternoon.

Up next for the 27-year-old is an all-Aussie showdown against De Minaur, who is also in stellar form. The recent Atlanta champion has advanced in Montreal with straight-set defeats of Denis Shapovalov and Grigor Dimitrov. Even with an amazing serve, Kyrgios will have to hit a ton of balls against an opponent of De Minaur’s defense caliber. All of these matches may eventually catch up with the world No. 37 from both a physical and mental standpoint–and that could very well happen now.

Pick: De Minaur in 3

Jannik Sinner. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

7) Jannik Sinner vs. Pablo Carreno Busta

Sinner and Carreno Busta will be facing each other for the third time in their careers on Thursday and their two previous encounters have not disappointed. Carreno Busta prevailed 7-5, 3-6, 7-6(6) on the indoor hard courts of Rotterdam in 2020 before Sinner battled to a 5-7, 7-5, 7-5 victory earlier this year in Miami.

As well as Carreno Busta is playing this week, the 23rd-ranked Spaniard may be hard-pressed to make this as competitive as the first two. He cruised past Matteo Berrettini and Holger Rune in rounds one and two, respectively, but before that he had been 4-8 in his last 12 matches away from clay. Berrettini is rusty and Rune is in a huge slump, so Sinner will be a whole different beast. The 12th-ranked Italian is an awesome 36-9 this season with a quarterfinal run at Wimbledon and a title two weeks ago in Umag (beat Carlos Alcaraz in the final). After getting past Adrian Mannarino 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday, Sinner should be off to the races in Montreal.

Pick: Sinner in 2

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.