ATP Australian Open Preview: Dimitrov vs Thiem

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This match has a genuine upset feel to it in my opinion, and I am going to attack at what looks a value price.

This is a really fascinating fourth round match-up, and not one I was anticipating fully at the start of the week. Both had very contrasting third round matches, so it will be interesting to see how both players back up here heading into the fourth round.

I am pretty intrigued by the odds on Dimitrov now they are loitering around the $4 mark. In this slam more than any other, reducing time on court is essential in the first week. Dimitrov was the beneficiary of Pablo-Carreno Busta’s abdominal injury, needing only 7 games before the Spaniard retired trailing 0-6 0-1. Whilst the injury wasn’t overly noticeable in the early stages of the match, Dimitrov showed he has an incredibly good handle on the conditions.

Thiem was absolutely on the brink against Nick Kyrgios, and remarked in the post match that he was already thinking about the loss and trying to review it when he was down 2 sets to 0 and double break point.  He dug himself out of that hole, broke Kyrgios straight after, and gave himself a pulse in the match. He didn’t face a lot of trouble on serve the rest of the journey, and managed to end up winning over 70% of points behind both his first and second serves for the match. Whilst going into a mode where unforced error limitation is the key can work against Kyrgios, I don’t see it being quite as effective here against Dimitrov.

The face Nicolas Massu is not in the player’s box for Thiem this fortnight cannot be understated. He looked a little lost at times out on court, and whereas Kyrgios gave him a path back into the match the other day, he won’t be given the same treatment by Dimitrov. I think the lack of crowd in this match helps Dimitrov more than it hinders, and it will be a big change in terms of atmosphere and feel for Thiem, going from John Cain Arena the other night to nobody this afternoon. In these moments, to not have Massu there to turn to for positivity is a bit loss for Thiem, especially after how effective it was at the US Open.

Dimitrov also has a very capable slice to be able to give Thiem different looks throughout the course of the match, and his movement from watching him live the other day is back to near his best. He has head to head success over Thiem in the past, and that will give him some confidence here if nothing else.

The fact you can get north of $4 for Dimitrov here is incredibly appealing and I will be backing him for 3 units on the moneyline. The faster conditions suit him more than Thiem, and I have the Australian heavily on upset alert today.

Suggested Bet

3 units Dimitrov to defeat Thiem at $4.10 (+310) at Betfair minus commission