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Next Gen Finals Predictions

by TN

The ATP Tour season is over, but the young stars are still battling it out in the Next Gen Finals. Here are our Next Gen Finals Predictions.

What is the Next Gen Finals?

If you haven’t heard of the Next Gen Finals before, it is a tournament similar to the ATP Finals in format, where the top-ranked under-21 players battle for a pool of 2 million dollars in prize money. There are two round-robin groups where the number one and two players then move to the semi-finals and final stage.

The fascinating thing about the Next Gen Finals is the amount of rule changes that the ATP experiment with during this event. I think it’s great to have an event like this where you can see how certain changes affect the flow of the game as well as the spectator experience.

Where is the Next Gen Finals 2023?

The event is not held in Milan like in previous years but in King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The King Abdullah Sports City is a multi-use stadium and sports city located 30 kilometers north of Jeddah. The sports city has three separate football fields and four small indoor arenas outside the main stadium. It also has six tennis courts and a large indoor arena for sports.

Next Gen Finals Rules 2023

The rule that stays every year is that they play best of five sets and a set is until 4 games. But then there are new things added every year.

  • Best of 5 sets, sets to 4 games
  • No on-court warm-up, matches start immediately after coin toss
  • Eight seconds between the first and second serves
  • In-match analytics through the Tennis IQ platform
  • Court-side coaching
  • Live electronic line calling
  • Simplified scoreboard (not sure what that means)
  • Free fan movement

Next Gen Players 2023

  • Arthur Fils
  • Dominic Stricker
  • Luca Van Assche
  • Flavio Cobolli
  • Abdullah Shelbayh
  • Alex Michelsen
  • Hamad Medjedovic
  • Luca Nardi

All these players will have their own player profiles on Tennisnerd shortly.

Next Gen Finals Predictions 2023

There are two groups at the Next Gen Finals, Green and Red.

Green Group
Fils
Stricker
Cobolli
Nardi

Red Group
Van Assche
Michelsen
Medjedovic
Shelbayh

The most experienced player in the field is 19-year-old Arthur Fils. He is already in the top 40 players in the world and won his first ATP Tour title in Lyon. He also reached the final in Antwerp and the semi-finals in Montpellier, Marseille, and Hamburg. That reads like the results of an already established player and that is why he is our favorite to win the event. However, the fast format of the Next Gen Finals is very different from a regular ATP event, which makes it difficult to predict.

The only player who has played this event before is Dominic Stricker. He reached the semi-finals last year and is perhaps more famous for defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas at the US Open. He also beat Fils in July 2023.

Based on Stricker’s game and experience, I will put him as the favorite to win the finals. But I think it is between Stricker and Fils.

Players qualifying from the green group: Stricker and Fils.
Players qualifying from the red group: Michelsen and Medjedovic

The rest of the field

Luca Van Assche is a talented French player with a versatile game, but he might lack the power to be a force in an indoor event like the Next Gen Finals.

Flavio Cobolli is yet another promising Italian player (there are so many in the top 200 ATP rankings). He has not had any big results yet but has a competent game without any significant weaknesses. I watched his match versus Alcaraz at the French Open this year and despite losing in straight sets, I am sure he has improved since.

Abdullah Shelbayh got a wildcard for the event and is the first Jordanian player in the Next Gen Finals. He did win his first ATP Tour Challenger title in October.

Alex Michelsen is another player in the new crop of strong Americans on tour. He won two Challenger Tour titles earlier in the year and reached the finals in Newport on grass. He plays well on fast courts and has a big serve, so he can be dangerous in Jeddah.

Hamad Medjedovic is coached by Viktor Troicki, has practiced with Novak Djokovic and is the Serbian rising star next to more established players like Miomir Kecmanovic. He reached two semi-finals in Gstaad and Astana ATP 250 events and won three Challenger titles. He also has a reputation of being an explosive character on the court. There is this YouTube compilation as an example.

Luca Nardi is the second Italian player in the event. He is just outside the top 100 and won two Challenger titles in 2023.

Next Gen Finals Predictions Day 1

Arthur Fils vs Luca Nardi prediction: Fils is the more experienced player with more firepower. He should win 3-1 Fils.

Dominic Stricker vs Flavio Cobolli prediction: Stricker has more experience and a bigger game. 3-0 Stricker.

Luca Van Assche vs Abdullah Shelbayh prediction: This is a tough prediction. I think it will go five sets and Shelbayh might win thanks to solid audience support (remains to be seen, though). 3-2 Shelbayh

Alex Michelsen vs Hamad Medjedovic prediction: Another very tough match. They both have strong serves, but Michelsen’s is arguably more dangerous. Michelsen’s cooler head will prevail in five sets. 3-2 to Michelsen.

You can check out the best tennis betting sites if you’re interested in placing a bet on the event. However, never bet more than you can afford to lose, and never harass players on social media.

Are you going to watch the Next Gen Finals 2023? What do you think of the event and the rule experiments?

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