Eastbourne ATP 2024 Preview – Warm-up to Wimbledon

by Bren Gray
eastbourne atp 250

Wimbledon is so close you can almost taste the strawberries and cream. But there’s one more week until the year’s third Grand Slam gets underway, and it’s an important one for some players.

Two ATP 250 tournaments remain to be played this week, one of which is the Rothesay International in Eastbourne. The event is a crucial opportunity for final momentum heading into Wimbledon, and is not to be missed. 

Who’s playing in Eastbourne this week?

The Rothesay International features a 28-player draw this week, with the top four seeds getting byes into the second round.

There are several big names in action, with the likes of Taylor Fritz, Alexander Bublik, Francisco Cerundolo and Tommy Paul all vying for the title, alongside local hopes Cam Norrie and Liam Broady.

Here are the eight seeded players in Eastbourne:

  1. Taylor Fritz
  2. Tommy Paul
  3. Alexander Bublik
  4. Sebastian Baez
  5. Francisco Cerundolo
  6. Mariano Navone
  7. Tomas Martin Etcheverry
  8. Alejandro Davidovich Fokina

Is Jack Draper playing in Eastbourne?

Surprised that Jack Draper’s name isn’t on the list above? We don’t blame you–he was, until recently.

Draper was listed to play the Rothesay International. However, off the back of his maiden ATP title in Stuttgart, and a quarter-final run last week in Queen’s, the British No 1 has opted to withdraw from the Eastbourne tournament. 

While it’s a loss for fans, the reality is Draper’s move is a smart one. The 22-year-old now has a genuine chance of going deep in Wimbledon, and could do with a rest ahead of the Grand Slam.

Other players to withdraw from Eastbourne recently are Arthur Fils and Jiri Lehecka. 

Fils has not given a reason, though rest ahead of Wimbledon is most likely. Lehecka, however, has suffered a back injury, which will also keep him out of Wimbledon and the Olympics.

taylor fritz tennis 2024
Taylor Fritz, favorite to win at Eastbourne

Who’s favorite to win the Rothesay International?

It’s going to be a fascinating contest at the Rothesay International this week. 

Paul comes into the tournament in red-hot form, off the back of his biggest-ever title in Queen’s on the weekend. Fritz has won here twice, and is the highest ranked player, while Cerundolo is defending champion. Throw in Bublik, who’s always a threat on grass, and it’s a wide open contest.

Here are the five players that tennis bookmakers are favoring to prevail in Eastbourne this week:

  • Taylor Fritz @ 4.00 | +300
  • Tommy Paul @ 5.50 | +450
  • Alexander Bublik @ 7.00 | +600
  • Cameron Norrie @ 13.00 | +1200
  • Zhizhen Zhang @ 17.00 | +1600

Fritz, Paul and Bublik lead the pack as the strongest contenders for the title, with Fritz slightly in front. Behind these three, there’s a reasonable drop off, with Norrie and Zhang the next best picks.

Parimatch Tennis Betting UK

Our Eastbourne ATP predictions and best bets

This week, predicting tennis outcomes is fascinating. 

On the one hand, we’re only in the third week of grass for the year. Players that have made a deep run or two have a huge advantage in terms of match time and momentum on the surface. At the same time, those who have played a lot on grass the past fortnight will have one eye on Wimbledon already. 

What does this mean for our Eastbourne ATP predictions? Well, here are the best bets we see ahead of the first ball being served this week. Check our betting guide if you want to place a bet on this tournament.

Alexander Bublik to win the title @ 7.00 | +600

First thing’s first, we say this will be the tournament where Bublik stands up and makes a deep run.

The Kazakh was rated by many, including us, to have a strong grass season this year. He captured the ATP 500 in Halle last year, and has made two other finals on grass previously. With a vicious first serve and the kind of unconventional play style that’s well suited to grass, it just feels like a matter of time until Bublik runs hot and claims another grass title.

All signs are pointing to this being the week. He’s meandered through the grass season so far, picking up opening wins at both Stuttgart and Halle, before falling in his second match. Both losses were competitive, indicating the world No 17 isn’t far off being at his best.

With a career ace rate of 19.2 percent on grass, Bublik can almost serve his way to the title in Eastbourne. He’s in the same quarter as Cerundolo, who’s been out of form recently. A potential semi-final opponent is top seed Fritz, however plenty of threats lurk in Fritz’s quarter, so that match up may well not eventuate.

Back Bublik to claim his second grass title the week before Wimbledon and grab some much-needed momentum.

Max Purcell to win third quarter @ 8.00 | +700

Aussie Max Purcell is yet to gain a main draw win on grass this season. Why pick him to win his quarter? Three reasons.

Firstly, the world No 101 has a wicked serve that can run hot. There’s every chance that happens this week.

Secondly, while he’s yet to win a match in a grass main draw, he’s actually been playing a lot of tennis on the surface. He made the s-Hertogenbosch semi-finals in doubles, plus won his way through qualifiers in Halle. Now, he’s navigated qualifying yet again in Eastbourne, and arrives in the first round with plenty of match time.

Thirdly, we see openings in Purcell’s quarter. His two seeds–Davidovich Fokina and Baez–are mercurial players who prefer clay. They could both easily lose, while the other in-form player, Zhizhen Zhang, is erring on the side of too much time on court ahead of Wimbledon.

It’s not a sure thing, but with a return of 8.00 (+700), we feel good about taking a punt on Purcell this week.

Unseeded finalist @ 1.40 | -250

Rounding out our Eastbourne predictions, a more conservative wager is to bet on there being an unseeded finalist this week.

In many ways, this is a numbers game. There are eight seeds, compared to 20 unseeded players. Just one of those 20 unseeded players needs to make the final–not even win the tournament–for this bet to pay.

With a handful of seeds looking shaky, we say this is a great bet. Whether it’s Purcell, Flavio Cobolli or even Kei Nishikori, there are plenty of options that will make this bet pay.

Who do you think could make a dark horse run to the final of the Rothesay International? Let us know in the comments below.

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