The original men’s Australian Open field of 128 has whittled down to four semifinalists. Those men left standing will look to make good on their success so far and capture the first major championship of the 2021 season.
The semifinals mark the sixth match in less than two weeks for all four players. It seems safe to say that the rest of the Australian Open will certainly test each’s endurance and stamina.
There’s a stark contrast in betting expectations for the two Australian Open men’s semifinals. With 17 major championships to his name, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic is the only remaining player to have won a previous Grand Slam tournament. He lines up as a truly massive favorite against upstart Russian Aslan Karatsev. In the second semifinal, Russian Daniil Medvedev and Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas will both aim to take the next step towards winning a first Grand Slam title.
This article includes match odds, analysis, and betting picks to help get you prepped for both Australian Open men’s semifinal matches.
Australian Open Men’s Semifinals Details
Date: Thursday, Feb. 18, and Friday, Feb. 19, 2021
Venue: Rod Laver Arena — Melbourne, AU
Start Time: 3:30 a.m. EST
Australian Open Men’s Semifinals Betting Odds and Picks
All odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook
(1) Novak Djokovic vs. Aslan Karatsev
Moneyline: Djokovic: (-1250) | Karatsev: (+800)
Games Spread: Djokovic: -7.5 (-125) | Karatsev: +7.5 (+102)
Total Games: 31.5 — Over: (-107) | Under: (-115)
He may be the top seed and a massive favorite in this semifinal match, but the Australian Open road hasn’t been entirely smooth sailing for Djokovic. In fact, he hasn’t had a straight-set victory since the first round. After an exhausting five-set marathon win over Frances Tiafoe in the third round, Djokovic raised speculation as to whether he would even be able to continue his championship defense due to an abdominal injury.
While the injury was clearly causing him discomfort in that match, it must not have been as bad as he originally believed. Djokovic rebounded to earn a pair of four-set wins in the fourth round and quarterfinals over formidable opponents in Milos Raonic and Alexander Zverev, respectively.
Of course, more people are probably rushing to search who Aslan Karatsev even is instead of concerning themselves with his prior tennis accomplishments. The 27-year-old only secured his spot in the Australian Open field as a qualifier. Yet here he is, getting ready to face the top men’s player in the world in the semifinals. March Madness may be next month, but this Cinderella run might be near impossible to top.
One will rarely find moneyline odds of 8-1 in any sporting event. While you might think those are huge, they pale in comparison to Karatsev’s pre-tournament futures price of 1000-1. A major bravo to anyone who has that ticket in hand! Karatsev has scored three upsets over seeded players to get to this point. He knocked off (8) Diego Schwartzman, (25) Felix Auger Aliassime, and (18) Grigor Dimitrov in the third, fourth, and quarterfinal rounds, respectively.
Novak Djokovic vs. Aslan Karatsev Prediction
Does Karatsev have one more shocking performance up his sleeve? Or will this be business as usual for the reigning Australian Open champ? Karatsev’s performance in Melbourne has been impressive, but I lean to the latter option when sizing up this matchup. After all, this is The Joker, Novak Djokovic we are talking about. The gap between him and the majority of the ATP Tour has been ginormous for some time now. Even at 33 years of age, Djokovic is still playing superb tennis.
Unless the abdominal injury suddenly flares up, or Djokovic simply doesn’t take Karatsev seriously, it’s hard to envision a competitive match. Laying over $12 on the moneyline is not advisable, but we can trim those odds down significantly by betting the match’s exact score. I’ll take Djokovic in straight sets and dare Karatsev to outperform my expectations.
Best Bet: Novak Djokovic to Win Match 3-0 (-148 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
(4) Daniil Medvedev vs. (5) Stefanos Tsitsipas
Moneyline: Medvedev (-230) | Tsitsipas: (+185)
Games Spread: Medvedev: -3.5 (-122) | Tsitsipas: +3.5 (-103)
Total Games: 39.5 — Over: (-113) | Under: (-110)
This second semifinal match features a pair who continue to ascend the men’s tennis rankings. This will be the first Grand Slam semifinals appearance for Daniil Medvedev at any major not named the U.S. Open. Overall, it marks his third time reaching the final four at a slam. Medvedev lost in the U.S. Open championship match to Rafael Nadal in 2019 and again to eventual champ Dominic Thiem in last year’s tournament.
Currently ranked No. 3 in the world, the 25-year-old has impressed throughout this year’s Aussie Open. Four of his five wins en route to the semifinals came in straight-set fashion, including his quarterfinals triumph over fellow Russian and seventh-seeded Andrey Rublev. Only Filip Krajinovic has won a set against Medvedev thus far in what turned out to be a five-set, third-round match.
Tsitsipas has been equally impressive, but with a slightly different road. This semifinal also marks his third time getting this far in a Grand Slam tournament. Unlike Medvedev, however, Tsitsipas has never played in a major title match. He lost in the semifinals in Rod Laver Arena two years ago, and then in the same round at last year’s French Open.
Speaking to the different path Tsitsipas has taken to this point, he won two matches in straight sets, and two went the full five-set difference. This includes his quarterfinals upset of Rafael Nadal, a match in which Tsitsipas fell two matches to none before pulling off a miraculous comeback. While this was far more grueling than Medvedev’s quarterfinals match, Tsitsipas has only played four matches thus far. He was awarded a walkover victory over fourth-round opponent Matteo Berrettini, who could not play due to injury.
Daniil Medvedev vs. Stefanos Tsitsipas Prediction
On the bright side for Tsitsipas, this second men’s semifinal match isn’t until Friday morning in the U.S. This affords him an extra day of recovery and leads me to believe fatigue won’t be quite as much of an issue as some might think. The underdog is very much alive to win this match outright, but there is also a strong value play on the sets spread that wouldn’t require a Tsitsipas victory. Look for a back-and-forth battle between these two rising stars. A five-setter is very much a possibility.
Best Bet: Stefanos Tsitsipas +1.5 Sets (-106 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
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