What a first day at the ATP Buenos Aires! Incredible tennis was on display as we started the Argentinian event on Monday and Day 2 promises to be another amazing day of tennis. Who will win and who will fall short? I give my best guesses! I also predict the other four matches in a second article.
ATP Buenos Aires Day 2 Predictions
Salvatore Caruso vs Gianluca Mager
Head to Head: 3-2 Caruso
Salvatore Caruso is playing his first match of the Golden Swing in this one. Caruso is very competent on clay, but hasn’t played on the surface yet in 2021. Gianluca Mager suffered a tight loss to Francisco Cerundolo in Cordoba last week. Mager won 64% of his first serve points, but only 40% of his second serve points in that match.
Caruso leads the head to head 3-2, but it’s tied 2-2 on clay. This match will come down to whether Mager can get on top of points early and control points with his first serve and forehand, or whether Caruso can draw points out and force Mager to overhit. While Mager played in Cordoba and Caruso didn’t, I trust Caruso’s steadiness more than Mager’s bigger game. Caruso wins, but it will be tight.
Prediction: Caruso in 3
Facundo Diaz Acosta vs Jaume Munar
Head to Head: never played
Facundo Diaz Acosta will look to make good use of his wild card to Buenos Aires. In Cordoba qualifying, Diaz Acosta took out Sumit Nagal, but lost in three sets to Camilo Ugo Carabelli. Jaume Munar had a disappointing loss to Nicolas Jarry in the first round of Cordoba, but has responded well, qualifying for Cordoba.
These two have never played before. Diaz Acosta plays a classic lefty game, but can be prone to errors. Munar should be able to force the Argentinian to overhit with his great defensive and counterpunching skills. Expect Munar to play solid tennis, which should be enough to get through this match.
Prediction: Munar in 2
Francisco Cerundolo vs Federico Coria
Head to Head: 2-1 Coria
Francisco Cerundolo and Federico Coria will certainly be familiar with one another. These two played in the second round of Cordoba last week. Coria won in three sets, 1-6 6-2 6-4. Coria was really able to take advantage of the Cerundolo second serve, with Coria winning 55% of Cerundolo’s second serve points.
The overall head to head between the two is 2-1 to Coria. Cerundolo will need to limit Coria’s chances on his second serve, so increasing his 56% first serve percentage from the last meeting is a must. Cerundolo’s forehand is nasty and he can fit his forehand shots into precise areas of the court, but lately he has been overhitting on that wing. Even though he qualified for Buenos Aires, he still wasn’t as consistent as I would have liked him to be from both wings . Expect Coria to draw too many errors out of Cerundolo. Coria wins this one in three sets.
Prediction: Coria in 3
Juan Manuel Cerundolo vs Federico Delbonis
Head to Head: 1-0 Delbonis
Juan Manuel Cerundolo is an ATP Tour champion! As crazy as that sounds, it’s the truth. Cerundolo played high IQ tennis throughout the week in Cordoba and perfectly used his variety, whether it be drop shots, angles, or moon balls. Opponents were constantly baffled by Cerundolo’s game. Federico Delbonis suffered a disappointing loss to Facundo Bagnis in his second match in Cordoba last week. Delbonis overhit too often in that match to win.
Delbonis leads the head to head 1-0, having beaten Cerundolo in Juan Manuel’s initial breakthrough in the 2019 Montevideo Challenger. Delbonis won that match in straight sets. I’m worried about the potential that Cerundolo experiences a hangover following his first ATP Tour title. Cerundolo might not be mentally ready for this match and Delbonis is going to be there to pounce on the opportunity. Expect Delbonis to control the court with his huge lefty serve and forehand and take this match fairly comfortably.
Prediction: Delbonis in 2
Main Photo from Getty.