TennisSection previews the 2021 Madrid Open as Matteo Berrettini (8) meets Casper Ruud in the Semi-Finals on Saturday May 8th, 2021.
A very interesting Semi-Final awaits at the 2021 Madrid Open. Eighth seeded Italian Matteo Berrettini will face unseeded Norwegian Casper Ruud in a Semi-Final that not many expected, but will be very exciting none the less. Both men have played outstanding tennis so far here in Madrid and are both gunning for their first Masters-1000 Final. Who will come away with the win here on Saturday?
Casper Ruud is currently ranked a career-high #22 in the ATP world rankings after his surprise run to the Semi-Finals in Monte-Carlo. He has carried that fine form here into the 2021 Madrid Masters, most notably with a stunning upset victory over Monte-Carlo champion Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Round of 16. He then brushed aside Alexander Bublik in a very one-sided affair and will be very confident here in his third consecutive Masters-1000 Semi-Final. The Norwegian has a huge baseline game, with heavy groundstrokes from both sides and is an elite mover on the clay surface. While he enters this match as the underdog against Matteo Berrettini, an argument can be made that he is the better clay court player at the moment and his solid baseline play match up well to the Italian’s style.
Matteo Berrettini is currently ranked #10 in the ATP world rankings, and has previously been ranked as high as #8. After struggling for a few months since returning to the ATP Tour, he finally is showing signs of the form that took him to the top 10. After an outstanding week in Belgrade where he won his fourth ATP title, he has continued strongly here at the 2021 Madrid Open, with straight sets wins over Fabio Fognini and Federico Delbonis, before a huge come-from-behind win over Cristian Garin in the Quarter-Finals. He has been dominating his opponents with the strong one-two punch with his serve and forehand, and has been a lot more consistent than usual. The Italian is considered the favorite here against Casper Ruud, but the Norwegian is also in amazing form and it certainly will be a very close affair.
This will be the fourth time the two men have faced each other on the ATP Tour, with Casper Ruud leading the head to head series 2-1. Both of his wins have been on his favored surface of clay, and Matteo Berrettini won their match on clay. This will certainly be a very close and exciting match between two aggressive players, and both men are deserving of reaching their first ATP-1000 Final. While Matteo Berrettini will be favored here, I am going with Casper Ruud to get the win here. The Norwegian has impressed me with his calm and confident approach this week, and is a bit more consistent from the baseline. His movement is also better than the Italian’s, and I think those two factors will be the difference here. Berrettini is capable of serving himself to victory, and while possible, that is unlikely on this surface against an elite returner like Ruud. Casper Ruud will win a very close three set match, reaching the 2021 Madrid Open Final.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Casper Ruud to win in three sets