36-year-old former Wimbledon semifinalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga looks to turn back the clock on Day 1 at the ATP Eastbourne tournament against Egor Gerasimov. We split Monday’s six matches between this article and one other. Who do you think will advance?
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs Egor Gerasimov
It was a routine straight set victory for Gerasimov when the pair met earlier this year in Barcelona on clay. Tsonga was once a special player but we haven’t seen any kind of good tennis from him since 2019 when he won 30 matches on tour (something he did every year from 2008 to 2017). Tsonga is 1-9 in his last 10 matches, his only win coming against fellow fading veteran Feliciano Lopez. Gerasimov is having a decent year but has never won a tour match on grass. Tsonga should be given a chance and can’t be counted out here, especially given his previous success on the surface, but Gerasimov is simply the better player on paper right now. Gerasimov in 3
Max Purcell vs James Duckworth
Duckworth, a journeyman, made it 2 for 3 in qualifying efforts during the ATP grass court season as he qualified for Eastbourne after previously qualifying in Stuttgart (but failing to do so in Halle). Duckworth will be a tricky opponent for his fellow Australian Max Purcell. These players should know each other’s games well, Purcell lacks experience though and has played a limited schedule this year as he tries to work his way onto the ATP tour. Purcell won an impressive 37 challenger tour matches in 2019 and has proven his talent. With all that said, Duckworth has the advantage in this match. Duckworth in 2
John Millman vs Jay Clarke
The wild card Clarke has never been ranked in the top 150, he’s had some success on the challenger tour level but there’s nothing in his recent results to indicate he’s ready for the big step up to the ATP tour. The local wild card is a big underdog against John Millman, Millman at 9-14 is not having a very memorable year, but he’s capable on faster surfaces like grass and should still be too much for Clarke. Millman in 2