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10SBalls | Tennis Shares Ricky’s picks for Day 3 of the U.S. Open, including Auger-Aliassime vs. Draper

Jack Draper of Britain will play Felix Auger=Aliassime at the US Open. EPA-EFE/NEIL HALL

By Ricky Dimon

Felix Auger-Aliassime and Alex de Minaur have at least one more round of facing unseeded opponents, but both could face potentially difficult matchups at the U.S. Open on Wednesday. Auger-Aliassime awaits Jack Draper, while De Minaur is aiming for revenge against Cristian Garin.

Jack Draper vs. (6) Felix Auger-Aliassime

Auger-Aliassime has been wildly up and down in 2022, which is nothing new for him. That includes his performances at Grand Slams, as he reached the Australian Open quarterfinals (had a match point against Daniil Medvedev) and the French Open fourth round (took Rafael Naal to five sets) but lost right away at Wimbledon to Maxime Cressy. The eighth-ranked Canadian’s hard-court results this summer are semis (Los Cabos), quarters (Montreal), and quarters (Cincinnati), but he had winnable matches in each of his losses and his 6-1, 6-2 setback against Casper Ruud in Montreal was especially bad.

Following a four-set win over Alexander Ritschard in the U.S. Open first round, Auger-Aliassime runs into Draper on Wednesday. Draper is also one of the game’s rising stars, as the 20-year-old Brit is up to No. 53 in the world thanks in part to 14 of his 16 career ATP-level match victories coming this season. Draper advanced to quarterfinals in both Montreal and Winston-Salem before crushing Emil Ruusuvuori 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 on Monday. The left-hander has more momentum behind him right now and is ready to announce himself on a Grand Slam stage. This really wouldn’t be a big upset.

Pick: Draper in 4

Alex de Minaur of Australia plays Cristian Garin at the US Open. EPA-EFE/RAY ACEVEDO

Cristian Garin vs. (18) Alex de Minaur

De Minaur and Garin will be squaring off for the third time in their careers on Wednesday. The head-to-head series stands at 3-1 in favor of De Minaur, but he is the one who is actually seeking a bit of revenge. They just faced each other in a memorable fourth-round showdown at Wimbledon, where Garin saved two match points and ended up completing a comeback from two sets down for a 2-6, 5-7, 7-6(3), 6-4, 7-6(6) victory. 

Based on their previous history, you have to like De Minaur’s chances of avenging that defeat. The 20th-ranked Australian dominated each of their first three meetings in straight sets, including twice on hard courts–6-3, 7-5, 6-3 in the same round of this same event three years ago and 6-4, 6-2 last spring in Indian Wells. Moreover, De Minaur has remained in strong form since Wimbledon–including a second Atlanta title and a 7-5, 6-2, 6-3 rout of Filip Krajinovic on Monday. Garin went back to clay following his success at the All-England Club and suffered first-round losses twice in a row. The 86th-ranked Chilean did well to beat Jiri Lehecka 3-6, 7-6(3), 7-5, 6-1 in his opener at Flushing Meadows, but that certainly doesn’t mean he is going to upset De Minaur for a second straight time.

Pick: De Minaur in 3

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