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Sunday, 18 November, 2018

Talented Fritz looks capable of keeping tabs on seed Thiem

Indian Wells champ Vesnina should outclass Flipkens

Taylor Fritz made light work of Marcos Baghdatis in round one
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Day four
Eurosport 1 & 2, from 4pm Thursday

Fritz v Thiem
Even if they have not exactly been starring in matches leading up to big tournaments, talented young players tend to come to the fore in Grand Slams and that was the case with Taylor Fritz in his US Open curtain-raiser on Wednesday.

The American teenager took apart Marcos Baghdatis, no mean performer at this level, 6-4 6-4 6-3 and it may be fair to expect more from Fritz, who came to notice when reaching the final of last year's Memphis Open.

It's seldom wise to underrate Dominic Thiem, whom Fritz meets on Thursday, but in general the Austrian is having an average year on hardcourts and is performing only slightly better on the clay terrain he loves.

Fritz can be chanced to upset Thiem, who started with a 6-4 6-1 6-1 pasting of Alex de Minaur, but for more cautious punters it looks a choice between backing him to win at least a set or with a start of 6.5 games on the handicap.

T Fritz + 6.5 games
1pt 8-11 Betfair, Paddy Power

Rublev v Dimitrov
Grigor Dimitrov has picked up in New York where he left off in winning the Cincinnati Masters, but while the Bulgarian is clearly in good heart he may face a tougher-than-expected clash against Andrey Rublev.

Promising Russian Rublev despatched Britain's Aljaz Bedene 6-1 6-4 6-4 and that victory reads well against Dimitrov's 6-1 6-4 6-2 dismissal of Vaclav Safranek.

Seventh seed Dimitrov, who from the outset was second-favourite behind Rafael Nadal to come through the first quarter of the draw, will bring plenty of his usual huff and puff to the table.

But Rublev looks a potentially high-quality operator and could be value to win at least a set against the favourite.

A Rublev to win at least a set
1pt 10-11 Betfair, Paddy Power

Vesnina v Flipkens
Elena Vesnina stepped up a gear when winning Indian Wells in March and the Russian may now have the self-belief to go deep in a Grand Slam event such as the US Open.

She opened at Flushing Meadows with a positive 6-1 6-3 win over talented young compatriot Anna Blinkova and that should put the 17th seed spot-on for a date with Kirsten Flipkens.

Flipkens is playing pretty well and saw off Madison Brengle 6-2 6-3 in her opener, but the Belgian looks exposed as a performer and it will be a surprise if Vesnina's class cannot help her progress to the last 32.

E Vesnina
1pt 4-6 general

Fritz took apart Marcos Baghdatis in straight sets and it may be fair to expect more from the American teenager
E.W. Terms
Sky bet