2023 Australian Open Day 6 Picks & Predictions: Ben Shelton Will Showcase His Skills Tonight

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Ben Shelton of the United States reacts to a point against Nuno Borges of Portugal during the Men's Singles First Round on Day One of the 2022 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on August 29, 2022. Al Bello/Getty Images/AFP

Tennis Pick: Ben Shelton ML (+131) at Bookmaker (visit our Bookmaker Review)

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The third round of the Australian Open concludes today. As we head into the weekend, the best players are rising to the top of the field. Let’s look at today’s featured matches to find more winning tennis picks

American fans of tennis looking to make some bets on the Australian Open can do it at any of these top US betting sites.

Alexei Popyrin vs. Ben Shelton 

Saturday, January 21, 2023 – 03:00 AM EST at John Cain Arena

Previous Matches

Alexei Popyrin is off to a great start here at his home tournament in Australia. He has survived two five-set thrillers so far. His most recent win was over world number nine Taylor Fritz, the top-ranked American in the world and the 8th seed in this tournament. Popyrin spent more than 4 hours on the court to dispatch Fritz. He pulled away at the end with a 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 6-7, 6-2 victory. 

In the win against Fritz, Popyrin dialed up 19 aces. He was aggressive on his second serve which led to eight double faults. This translated to him winning 54% of his second serves, however, and this was the difference in the match. Popyrin only faced two break points during the five-set affair. 

Popyrin is only 23 years old and ranked 113 in the world. He scored an impressive win in the lead-up to the Australian Open, defeating Felix Auger-Aliassime in the opening round of the Adelaide tournament. He has managed to parlay that success and build some momentum by making this his best Grand Slam result in his career. 

Now Alexei Popyrin must face another big-serving American player. Popyrin takes on Ben Shelton tonight. Ben Shelton is a 20-year-old player who is ranked 89th in the world. Shelton also needed five sets to escape his first-round matchup against Zhizhen Zhang.  

He followed that up with the routine three-set win over Nicolas Jarry. In the match against Jarry, Shelton's huge first serve was on display as he won 82% of his first serve points. He was incredibly effective and aggressive with his second serve, winning 70% of second-serve points. He was never broken on serve during the match. 

The Picks

Alexei Popyrin and Ben Shelton have never played before. Popyrin should be accustomed to returning huge serves after his match against Fritz. This match should feature plenty of huge serves and plenty of aces. 

I expect this match to go over 41.5 games. Both men will find it incredibly hard to break the other's serve. Both men are aggressive in their second serves and have a huge advantage when serving even if the first serve doesn't land. While double faults could be an issue, the payoff of landing a huge second serve makes up for the few points that they give away when the second serve misses the mark. 

I can see one or two breaks of serve in this match. I think there is also value in the American Ben Shelton to continue his hard-serving ways and get the victory. I could see him winning a hard fight, a 7-6, 6-7, 6-4, 7-6 win. After reviewing the ATP odds, I have found two picks for this match, take the plus money with the Ben Shelton moneyline and the Over 41.5 games. 

Tennis Pick: Ben Shelton ML (+131) at Bookmaker

Tennis Pick: Over 41.5 Games (-115) at Bookmaker

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Over 41.5 Games (-115)
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Ekaterina Alexandrova vs. Magda Linette  

Saturday, January 21, 2023 - 05:00 AM EST at Rod Laver Arena

Previous Matches

Ekaterina Alexandrova is a 28-year-old Russian player ranked 18th in the world. Alexandrova excels on quick courts, and the way the courts play here in Australia suits her just fine. These quick courts allow Alexandrova to take advantage of her serve as well as using slice to keep the ball low for her opponents. On quicker courts, Alexandrova can hit through opponents and find winners. 

Magda Linette is a 30-year-old Polish player ranked 45th in the world. Linette has been grinding at tennis and barely took an offseason, choosing to play Challenger events rather than rest and recover. Taking no time off has brought her game sharp into this season.

After a disappointing showing at the warm-up event in Hobart, Linette has put forth two good victories so far here in Melbourne. Linette defeated the grinder Mayar Sherif in round 1, 7-5, 6-1. She then scored a win over Anett Kontaveit, which showed that Linette has the chops to beat the top players in the world. 

The Pick

Alexandrova's style will be greatly accentuated by these courts while Linette prefers to grind on the slower courts. The court surface will make the difference today as Alexandrova will be able to use her power to hit through the Polish player.

Alexandrova has flown under the radar because of her erratic play, but when she's on form, she can beat anyone. She's on form right now and this means trouble for the rest of the WTA field. 

Both players have scored big wins so far,  but it'll be Ekaterina Alexandrova that continues her winning streak tonight. Looking at the WTA odds, I expect Alexandrova to be able to win this match 7-5, 6-4. Our second play for today is Ekaterina Alexandrova -2.5 games. 

Tennis Pick: Ekaterina Alexandrova -2.5 Games (-119) at Bookmaker

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