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Rome Masters- Tips for the fifth masters event of 2024

New foes Alcaraz and Sinner absent from the Rome Masters, but can old foes Djokovic and Nadal fill the void?


The final masters event before the French Open begins soon, with some of the top players desperate to find some form before Roland Garros.


Two big omissions that everyone will notice are Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz, on current form the best two players in the world.


Sinner is recovering from a hip injury that forced him to retire from the Madrid Masters, while Alcaraz is also recovering from an injury picked up in Madrid.


The Rome Masters is the fifth Masters event of the year, and so far the previous four have all been won by different players.


With these young superstars missing out, perhaps now is the time for Djokovic to win his first tournament of the season?




The two best operators on the clay so far this season have been Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud. Both players come into Rome having underperformed in Madrid. However, this may lend itself to helping the pair recover from their previous two tournaments, where both times they met in the final.


Tsitsipas (10/1) finds himself in the third quarter with the surprise champion in Madrid, Andrey Rublev. Despite having just claimed the Madrid Masters, I find it unlikely that Rublev (16/1) will claim two titles back to back, given his form on the whole has been sub-par this year.


In fact, Tsitsipas’ biggest challenge will likely come from Nicholas Jarry (150/1). The Chilean has not had his finest year, but was one of the surprise packages of 2023, putting together several excellent runs on clay.


I can see Jarry causing a few upsets and potentially reaching at least the quarter-finals.


As for Ruud (12/1), he finds himself in the first quarter, potentially against a very fired up Djokovic, encouraged by the absence of the young superstars who have eclipsed him so far in 2024.


After a slow start to the year, Ruud picked up a much deserved title in Barcelona. This after he produced an excellent run in Monte Carlo, beating Djokovic in the final before missing out to Tsitsipas in the final.


Ruud is always excellent value on clay, but despite a recent victory over Djokovic, if Ruud were to meet the great Serb again, Djokovic (11/5)will likely have the bit between his teeth and will be too much for him and most players in Rome…


That said, the favourite in my eyes, heralds from the second quarter of the draw. We have spoken a lot this season about Alexander Zverev (10/1) and the quality tennis he is capable of producing, but as of yet he has been unable to turn this into a title of note.


I do believe however that Zverev is on course to have a good year and Rome may well be the place he starts. Zverev’s preferred surface is hard courts, but he has shown he is more than capable of producing high quality tennis on clay.


His quarter is reasonably straight forward, with talented clay court specialist Lorenzo Musetti (66/1) his biggest threat. If he comes through his quarter, then the real test will present itself in the form of either Djokovic or Ruud.When trying to predict the outcomes of clay court tournaments, there is ratharsh trick that can be used. Look at the quarter Daniil Medvedev (16/1) is in and pick someone from there.


Medvedev comes into this tournament as the defending champion in Rome, but has a dire clay court record. While he has looked better on the surface this year, clay is still by far his weakest surface and anyone from his quarter often has a solid chance of progressing deep into the tournament.


The player I am going to endorse from the fourth quarter, yet again, is Holger Rune (16/1). The young Runecontinues to struggle in 2024, but his resurgence feels right around the corner, if it is going to happen somewhere, why not on the clay he loves at the tournament he finished runner-up at last year.


And what of the man on everyone’s lips at the moment.


Rafael Nadal (18/1).


While he is yet to make it past the last 16 of a tournament, Nadal’s return to competitive tennis has come with some major positives that should encourage his adoring fans.


The biggest one being his victory over Alex de Minaur in Madrid, avenging his earlier loss in Barcelona.


It looks like there is still a lot of work to do for Rafa, and the serious question remains as to whether his body can take it.


The title in Rome may be a step too far, but it is always a treat whenever Rafa steps onto court.

Predicted Quarter-Final lineups





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