The ATP Estoril Open has seen some excellent tennis and shock results on Day 2 as the first round comes to a close. Round 2 promises some thrilling encounters coming our way, with the top seeds making their first appearances. We at Last Word On Tennis will be making our predictions on who will be marching on in Portugal, and we’re set to be in for a fantastic day.
ATP Estoril Day 2 Predictions
Marin Cilic vs Nuno Borges
Head-to-head: First meeting:
Marin Cilic did well to come through a tight affair against rising star Carlos Alcaraz, and is playing some great tennis right now. Nuno Borges has surprised many this week after upsetting multiple players in the qualifiers as well as securing a straight sets win over Jordan Thompson. The Portuguese youngster is quickly showing his worth on this surface, and his current ranking of #331 will surely be far higher in the near future.
This should be an interesting match-up. While we know the blistering tennis that Cilic is capable of, Borges has some serious firepower off both wings, and he’s clearly utiliing this well right now. He’s playing with almost no fear at the moment, so expect him to take this match to Cilic. The Croat’s experience and strength should serve him well enough to win the match, but a great contest will come with it.
Prediction: Cilic in 3
Kevin Anderson vs Roberto Carballes Baena
Head-to-head: First meeting
Anderson came through a titanic battle with Frances Tiafoe on Monday, which was an excellent result for him. He appears to be playing closer to his best right now after his torrid injury woes, and could have a real chance at the title if he keeps it up. Anderson’s intensity is currently very high and he’s playing some really aggressive tennis.
Carballes Baena lost to Nuno Borges in straight sets in the qualifiers, but as Kei Nishikori had to pull out, he has another chance as a lucky loser. The Spaniard was the second seed in qualifying, so losing to someone ranked far below him suggests his form isn’t where he’d hope it to be. He’s proven to be a great clay court grinder in the past, but Anderson’s return to fitness and form should be too much for him. Expect Anderson to win this one, with some potential resistance coming at times from the lucky loser.
Prediction: Anderson in 2
Jeremy Chardy vs Alejandro Davidovich Fokina
Head-to-head: Davidovich Fokina 1 – 0 Chardy
Another very interesting encounter here. Both players came through in three sets in their first round matches and did well to win against some tough opponents. Davidovich Fokina won the first and only meeting between these two back in 2019 which also took place in Estoril, which the Spaniard won very comfortably 6-1 6-2. Despite this, Chardy has looked good recently and is very often a tough guy to beat.
Davidovich Fokina is looking in really good form as each year goes by, and a good run here will certainly boost his chances of having a good run at the French Open. His power is breath-taking at times and his all-round game is constantly improving. Chardy may find it difficult if his opponent is finding his spots consistently, though he’ll certainly make a match of it. Expect a gruelling battle, with the young Spaniard coming out on top.
Prediction: Davidovich Fokina in 3
Ugo Humbert vs Marco Cecchinato
Head-to-head: Humbert 1 – 0 Cecchinato
The most enticing match of the day comes from rising Frenchman Humbert against former French Open semi-finalist Cecchinato. Humbert, the third seed, will be making his first appearance in Estoril this week, whereas Cecchinato had a solid straight sets win over Lloyd Harris in Round 1. The two have only met on one occasion, which came last year in Auckland where Humbert won 6-1 6-4, though this was on a hard court.
Humbert’s game is beautiful to watch when he’s on form, but we’ve yet to see it on the clay this season. If he can get going then he may well cause Cecchinato plenty of problems. That said, Cecchinato is looking good at the moment and it’s certainly not going to be comfortable for either player. It may end up coming down to whether or not Humbert can soak up and counter-punch Cechhinato’s power, or if the Italian can out-hit him. A tight contest will surely ensue which could go either way, but we’ll go with Humbert on this one.
Prediction: Humbert in 3
Main Photo from Getty.