We get to see the final of the ATP Emilia-Romagna Open in Parma, Italy on Saturday. Neither contender in the final is a huge surprise, but neither is seeded either. Who will enter the French Open with some much-needed confidence and some cool hardware. Sebastian Korda has never won a tournament in career. Marco Cecchinato has won three, but none since early 2019. Who will win Saturday’s final? I share my thoughts, and–as always–I’m more than happy to read yours.
ATP Parma Final Prediction
Sebastian Korda vs Marco Cecchinato
Cecchinato had an amazing run on clay in 2018. He won a title in Budapest in the spring, and a month later followed it up with a sensational run to the French Open semifinals, including a stunning win over Novak Djokovic. He won a second title that summer in Umag, and a third clay title in Buenos Aires in early 2019.
Since then, though, the Italian has struggled. He did not do well on the clay that spring, and it hasn’t improved since. His ranking, which reached a career high of #18 after the Buenos Aires win, has fallen outside the Top 100. He hasn’t shown any of that this week, though. Even though the draw has been somewhat easy, Cecchinato has shown glimpses of his former self in impressive wins in each of his four matches.
Korda entered this tournament in the midst of a poor clay season. After an impressive early hard court season–including reaching the final in Delray Beach and the semifinals of Miami (where he demolished Aslan Karatsev)–Korda had gone 1-4 on clay since April.
The talent and improvement were obvious, and none of the losses were particularly embarrassing. Also, he proved his clay abilities by qualifying for and reaching the French Open fourth round last October, so the drastic change from early in the season was a bit surprising. The American has found his clay form in Parma, though, with four dominant wins. He defeated talented clay courters Lorenzo Sonego and Tommy Paul in the process, and has yet to drop a set. I expect that to continue. With how well Korda is playing, no one is beating him.
Prediction: Korda in 2
Main Photo from Getty.