ATP Antalya Day 1 Predictions Including Emil Ruusuvuori vs Jiri Vesely

Challenger Tour Emil Ruusuvuori

Tennis is back on the map, hopefully for a much more “normal” season than 2020 turned out to be. The ATP Tour starts in Antalya and Delray Beach. As always in the first week after a break, everyone is on a bit of a clean slate and not much should be considered a certainty. Who made the most of the off-season and will come back stronger right off the bat? We predict all of Thursday’s matches for you, between this and a second article.

ATP Antalya Day 1 Predictions

Altug Celekbilek vs Kacper Zuk

Head-to-head: First meeting

What a great opportunity for both players. Kacper Zuk is here because of the extremely low cut-off, while Altug Celekbilek secured a main draw spot via a wildcard. Playing at home in a rather peculiar Turkish climate can be a big asset for Celekbilek here, but he should be viewed as the underdog in this one. Kacper Zuk has already proven himself at that level (beat Dennis Novak and played a great match against Marin Cilic at last year’s ATP Cup), he was also looking great on the ITF circuit in the latter half of the 2020 season.
Prediction: Zuk in 3

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Miomir Kecmanovic vs Stefano Travaglia

Head-to-head: First meeting

Of the two, Stefano Travaglia is the more stable performer and he’s a sure bet to always bring the same level of passion and intensity to the court. However, his ceiling is not as high as Miomir Kecmanovic’s. The Italian covers the court extremely well and if the young Serbian won’t be able to keep his error count low, counterpunching could be a way to victory here. However, this could very well be the year of Kecmanovic. After taking the pressure of winning an ATP title off his shoulders in Kitzbuhel last year, the Serbian should now be able to approach the game with a lot more maturity and security. He started the previous season playing very well and perhaps he could once again have found the right balance in off-season training?
Prediction: Kecmanovic in 3

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Emil Ruusuvuori vs Jiri Vesely

Head-to-head: First meeting

For many, Emil Ruusuvuori was supposed to be one of the players to watch in 2020. His progress hasn’t been as fast as expected, perhaps due to the fact that his transition game is lacking and he ends up glued to the baseline way too often. Still, his powerful groundstrokes and a potent first serve are of enough quality to keep him winning matches on the tour-level. This is a bit of a low-key highlight of the round, both are very competent hard court players and should provide a rather tight game that should be based around winning their own service games. As it’s the first match of the year, this is a bit of guesswork. Jiri Vesely has been around for a long time and perhaps developed a more steady level of his game. For the youngster, a month of practice during the off-season could mean a lot more.
Prediction: Ruusuvuori in 3

Main Photo from Getty.

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