Antwerp Open 2021: Alex de Minaur vs. Brandon Nakashima Tennis Pick and Prediction

Antwerp Open 2021: Alex de Minaur vs. Brandon Nakashima Tennis Pick and Prediction

TennisSection previews the 2021 Antwerp Open as Alex de Minaur (5) meets Brandon Nakashima in the First Round on Tuesday October 19th, 2021.

Can the young upstart Brandon Nakashima pile more misery on the struggling Alex de Minaur here in the First Round at the 2021 Antwerp Open? The American is having a breakout season of sorts in 2021, announcing himself on the world stage with some strong results on the ATP Tour. Alex de Minaur is a former top 20 player that has been having an off-season thus far, and will be eager to get back on track. Who will win here and advance to the Round of 16?

Alex de Minaur is the sixth seed here at the 2021 Antwerp Open and is currently ranked #26 on the ATP Tour. The Australian has earned a reputation as one of the most consistent performers on the circuit, but has been struggling since the early part of the year when he won the Antalya Open. He then won Eastbourne for his second title of the year in June but he has been in terrible form since, winning just four matches in his eight tournaments since. He found some form last week in Indian Wells where he reached the Third Round, defeating Cristian Garin and losing a three set thriller to Stefanos Tsitsipas. That was a good sign for him, and would have given him a lot of confidence. If he can replicate that kind of performance then he should be expected to win here against his First Round opponent Brandon Nakashima.

Brandon Nakashima is currently ranked #79 in the world rankings and entered the 2021 Antwerp Open by virtue of coming through the Qualifying Rounds. The American 20 year old has been rocketing up the rankings recently, reaching back to back Finals in Los Cabos and Atlanta. The youngster has a big game, with a strong serve and powerful groundstrokes, allowing him to dominate opponents from the baseline with relative ease. However, where he tends to fall down is his focus, and he can commit numerous unforced errors at times, and it is something that he has to work on. He looked solid in the Qualifying Rounds, and will be liking his chances of causing a major upset here against the struggling Alex de Minaur. If he can keep errors to a minimum he has the game to trouble the world number 26.

This will be the first meeting between the two players on the ATP Tour and I am expecting a fiercely contested match. Alex de Minaur is the obvious favorite on paper as he is over 50 spots higher than Brandon Nakashima in the rankings, but he has been in a serious slump lately, and his confidence appears to be in tatters. However, he is highly experienced and he has the ability to grind out tough wins with his elite defense. Nakashima is a very good young prospect and has the game to win this match, but I am not confident in his ability to maintain his focus for the entire match, and I see him losing here. I think that this will go the distance, but experience usually wins out the longer and closer matches go, so we are backing the Aussie to win here, advancing to the Round of 16 at the 2021 Antwerp Open.

Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Alex de Minaur to win in 3 sets

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