Big names shocked on Wednesday
Rafa Nadal, Nick Kyrgios and Casper Ruud were among the big names suffering defeats as favourite on Wednesday, with Borna Coric ruining Nadal's return to tour. Kyrgios was easily beaten by Taylor Fritz in just 50 minutes, while Ruud was shocked by the unheralded 19-year-old Ben Shelton who is playing in his first ever Masters 1000 tournament.
Shelton bringing in huge serve numbers to Norrie clash
This leaves the bottom half of the draw wide open, with Shelton's reward for that victory a clash against Cameron Norrie. It's so tough to ascertain Shelton's level right now with this being his fifth career main tour match, and generally beating some poor opposition on the Challenger Tour - albeit winning a lot of matches against those poor opposition.
Norrie is 1.392/5 to get the victory and there's part of me that makes me think that this is a gift, but Shelton has been serving so well (75% of service points won - huge numbers) that there's a decent chance that the young American can keep things close at the very least.
Don't rule out tiebreaks between Isner and Korda
Several years older than Shelton is Sebastian Korda, who should move into the top 50 very shortly after his run here, and Korda has the potential to rise further with a win today over John Isner. Indeed, the market makes Korda the pre-match favourite over his veteran countryman, at a current 1.594/7.
Based on 2022 hard court data, this looks about a few ticks short but nothing hugely out of line, although there's the completely opposite dynamic between the duo. The big-serving Isner has won 12% more service points than Korda, but the return-oriented Korda has a 15% edge on return, so it's quite difficult to dispute the market pricing.
Isner will likely just try to draw Korda into high variance spots in games, and tiebreaks, although the seven previous sets between the duo haven't yielded a single tiebreak so far. However, Isner's six sets in his wins so far have featured four tiebreaks (three won by Isner), so there's plenty of potential for more to come this evening.
Fritz looking short-priced against Rublev
With a lot of matches featuring heavy favourites, the final match I want to discuss is Taylor Fritz versus Andrey Rublev. Fritz has been in solid form over the last couple of months and of course was the man who dumped out Kyrgios last night in straight sets, and is currently trading as the 1.528/15 market favourite.
This is quite the departure from their last meeting in March on hard court at Indian Wells, where Rublev was priced around the 1.558/15 mark, and while Rublev has struggled of late, today's price on him does look a bit big to me.
On hard court this year, there's very little to split the duo in terms of data, so the 2.8415/8 about Rublev looks a reasonable underdog option on a day where there's not much value to be had.