ATP St Petersburg Open Day 3 Predictions Including Daniil Medvedev vs Richard Gasquet

Daniil Medvedev in action ahead of the ATP St Petersburg Open

Wednesday at the ATP St Petersburg Open will feature all the remaining first-round matches plus two second-round encounters. As ever, we here at the LWOS tennis department will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Stan Wawrinka vs Evgeny Donskoy. But who will advance and who will slip to defeat?

ATP St Petersburg Open Day Three Predictions

Denis Shapovalov vs Viktor Troicki 

Head-to-head: Shapovalov 1-1 Troicki

Denis Shapovalov will no doubt have plenty of motivation after the breakthrough he looked poised to make after his efforts in New York and Rome did not arrive in Paris, where he lost in the second round to Roberto Carballes Baena in five sets. He will open his campaign in St Petersburg against the Serbian veteran Viktor Troicki, who has been ranked as high as 13th in the world, but who is playing in the main draw at the St Petersburg Open as a lucky loser.

This will be their third meeting, with Troicki winning their first, which came in Shanghai in 2017, before Shapovalov avenged that defeat with a 6-3 6-7 7-6 win in Miami in 2018. It seems unlikely that this meeting will be so close. Shapovalov is a more mature and complete player than he was two years ago, even if he can occasionally throw in below-par performances, whilst Troicki, who currently finds himself ranked 197th in the world, is not the force he once was.

Prediction: Shapovalov in 2
Embed from Getty Images

Ugo Humbert vs Pavel Kotov

Head-to-head: first meeting

Pavel Kotov qualified for the ATP St Petersburg Open with solid three-set wins over Jurij Rodionov and Emilio Gomez, both of whom are ranked over 100 places above him. But the step up in competition the Russian faces in the main draw looks significant. This will be the first ATP match of Kotov’s career, whereas his opponent, the Frenchman Ugo Humbert, has already established himself as a tour-level regular, despite being just five months older than Kotov.

Humbert has played 70 ATP Tour matches, winning 34 of them, and claimed the title at the Auckland Open earlier this season. Kotov will be able to call upon the support of the crowd, but it is still hard to see him getting the better of Kotov. Humbert’s game is well-suited to indoor tennis, with his lefty forehand a particularly useful weapon. Ultimately, as well as Kotov played to come through the qualifying, Humbert is simply a better player than him.

Prediction: Humbert in 2
Embed from Getty Images

Reilly Opelka vs Nino Serdarusic

Head-to-head: first meeting

Nino Serdarusic also had to earn his place in the main draw by coming through the qualifying, with the Croatian battling past Cem Ilkel and Nikola Milojevic, both of whom took him the distance. He will now seek only his second ATP-level win, and what would be his first outside Croatia, when he takes on world #36 Reilly Opelka. It looks like a tough ask of Serdarusic, with Opelka arguably the best server in the men’s game and sure to enjoy the indoor conditions.

That said, Opelka’s form has not been particularly impressive lately. He played well at the relocated Cincinnati Masters, reaching the quarterfinals, but he was forced to retire there with an injury and has not won a match since, losing to David Goffin at the US Open and Jack Sock at Roland Garros. His huge first serve should win him plenty of free points here, however, with Serdarusic lacking experience of tennis at this level and against opponents boasting as much power as Opelka.

Prediction: Opelka in 2
Embed from Getty Images

Daniil Medvedev vs Richard Gasquet

Head-to-head: Gasquet 1-0 Medvedev

Daniil Medvedev, the defending champion at the ATP St Petersburg Open, arrives after a very disappointing clay-court swing. The Russian is not at his best on the surface, but he did make it to the semifinals at the Monte Carlo Masters last season, beating Novak Djokovic en route, as well as the Barcelona Open final, so he will doubtless be frustrated to have lost his openers in both Rome and Paris. Still, back in his native Russia, he may like his chances of putting together a good run.

His first challenge will be to overcome the experienced Richard Gasquet. The Frenchman played just once on the clay, losing in not particularly competitive fashion to Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round at Roland Garros. Unfortunately, that was hardly surprising, with Gasquet in a seemingly terminal decline. He still possesses ability as a shot-maker, and has beaten Medvedev before indoors. But that win came over two years ago. Gasquet has looked half a step slow of late and there are few who defend than Medvedev.

Prediction: Medvedev in 2

Main photo:
Embed from Getty Images


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.