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ATP Indian Wells Masters Betting Preview: Gael Monfils vs Hubert Hurkacz

March 9, 2024

French veteran Gael Monfils will lock horns with 8th-seed Hubert Hurkacz of Poland in the second round of the Indian Wells Masters on Saturday evening. 

The winner of this match will advance to face either No. 28 seed Cameron Norrie of Great Britain or Lorenzo Sonego of Italy in the third round. 

The pair have already played two times (1-1), but both meetings were in 2019 and the bookies are now backing Hurkacz to win the match. The Pole won his last match against Monfils when he claimed a 6-2, 7-6 victory at the Shanghai Masters. 

Still, Monfils won their first ever meeting - at the Canadian Open - a couple of months earlier when he beat Hurkacz 6-4, 6-0 in the last-16. Yet, Monfils' fitness was once again the issue as the Frenchman was forced to withdraw before his semi-final clash against Rafael Nadal in Montreal.  

Gael Monfils Betting Preview (+145 at Everygame) 

Having reached the quarter-finals in 2019, when he was forced to retire due to an achilles injury ahead of his match with eventual champion Dominic Thiem, Monfils is now making his 15th appearance in Indian Wells.

La Monf has been battling with numerous setbacks and injuries over the years but his attitude and skills are what makes him so special.  

The 37-year-old Monfils started his Indian Wells campaign with a comfortable 6-1, 6-2 win over Max Purcell of Australia - his first ATP Masters 1000 victory since Cincinnati.

Monfils was only able to reach the second round of the season's opening Grand Slam in January as he lost 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 to Tomas Martin Etcheverry of Argentina. 

After his Australian journey, Monfils returned to his homeland where he suffered a first-round exit in Montpellier. He continued at the Rotterdam Open where the French veteran earned a hard-fought 7-6, 7-6 win over Denis Shapovalov in the first round. 

However, Monfils was pretty unfortunate to face Jannik Sinner in the second round, in what was the Italian's second match after his remarkable Australian Open triumph in January. 

Monfils' most impressive performances of the season came at the Qatar Open last month, when as a wildcard, the Frenchman reached the semi-finals. He clinched wins over Botic van de Zandschulp, Zhizhen Zhang and compatriot and third seed Ugo Humbert to become the oldest semifinalist at the tournament. 

Yet, he lost in three sets to Czech sensation Jakub Mensik in the semi-finals. However, after his performances, Monfils returned to the top 55 in the ATP rankings.

Hubert Hurkacz Betting Preview (-189 at Everygame)

Having reached back-to-back quarter-finals at Indian Wells in 2019 and 2021, Hubert Hurkacz is now bidding to go further in 2024. 

Hurkacz started the season with some promising performances as he guided Team Poland to the United Cup final and also reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open. In fact, victories over qualifiers Omar Jasika and Jakub Mensik, as well as against 21th seed Ugo Humbert of France and another Frenchman, wildcard Arthur Cazaux secured him his first Major quarter-final. 

Furthermore, considering the revelation of Czech teenager Jakub Mensik, Arthur Cazaux's progress and the upsurge of Ugo Humbert this season, these wins are even more impressive and the five-setter against Mensik was a statement from both players. However, Hurkacz took a two-sets-to-one lead but he eventually lost to Daniil Medvedev in the quarterfinals. 

As a result, Hurkacz currently sits at a career-high No. 8. and the 27-year-old Polish player will be aiming to continue his development. 

Right after his memorable Australian Open campaign, Hurkacz entered the Open 13 Provence tournament in Marseille as the top-seed, defending champion. He reached the semifinals after comfortable wins over Alexander Shevchenko of Kazakhstan and Tomas Machac of the Czech Republic - two players playing their best game. 

In the semifinals, he lost in straight-sets to fourth-seed Ugo Humbert, who went on to win the trophy, in a rematch of their Australian Open tie.

Hurkacz arrived in California after another quarter-final appearance in 2024. Even though he won the first set, he once again lost to Ugo Humbert at the Dubai Tennis Championships and the Frenchman once again went on to win the title. 

Spooky Express Betting Prediction 

Based on the latest real-time analysis, Gael Monfils served up a serious shotquality performance in his first-round clash against Percell. And the manner of his win means he conserved an energy he will need against big-hitter Hubert Hurkacz in the second round. 

In fact, Hurkacz's strategy of relying on tiebreakers and leveraging his solid serving has already faltered on a few occasions this season. And Monfils would love to exploit this.

To be fair, the French veteran will have nothing to lose when he takes on Hurkacz and we expect to see a tight contest between two inspired players. 

Spooky Express Free Play: Over 23.5 Games -111 at Everygame for 6/10 Units