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Filip Krajinovic
USA Today Sports / Robert Deutsch
Odds and Ends

Tennis Best Bets for July 18

by Kenny Ducey
Updated On: July 17, 2021, 5:41 pm ET

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We've had a thrilling week of tennis across the three ATP tournaments we're following and Sunday marks the exciting finale. I've got a play on the action at Bastad and I'll get to that now. 

Filip Krajinovic (+102) vs. Pablo Carreno-Busta (-130)

What was a lost season for Krajinovic turned around in a huge way this week with some quality wins on the clay in Hamburg. His exceptional backhand has been on full display and his hitting has been consistent with plenty of depth. It would have been impressive enough to take down players like Daniel Altmaier, Philipp Kohlschreiber and Laslo Djere, but a win over Stefanos Tsitsipas takes the cake.

Krajinovic's next test will be the Spaniard Pablo Carreno-Busta, who just came through a tight semifinal match against a very in-form Federico Delbonis. PCB never really looked great in the first set before turning it up in the tiebreaker, saving a bundle of break points. He also nearly gave back his lead in the second before he was eventually able to close it out against the tiring lefty.

The Serb looks like his old self again, and that guy was capable of pushing towards a Grand Slam final. Krajinovic is arguably most comfortable on clay, and should able to keep Carreno-Busta behind the baseline and use his variety and strong net play to take down the top-15 player.

It's important to note, as well, that clay could be PCB's worst surface at the moment, though his record this year has been great. Krajinovic also holds a 2-1 lifetime record against Carreno-Busta and took the most recent meeting on a hardcourt in 2019.

I expect a lights-out match from Krajinovic and think his road to the final has been much tougher and much more impressive. He's an incredible shot-maker and has showcased that since the first round. 

Edge: Krajinovic +102

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Kenny Ducey

Kenny Ducey is a former member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, writing and editing for Sports Illustrated and Baseball Prospectus. His work also appears at DraftKings and The Action Network. Follow him on Twitter @KennyDucey.