After Novak Djokovic’s historic Wimbledon title, the ATP grass season continues in Newport, always an eagerly awaited tournament in the tennis season. One of the players making his debut on Monday will be 2018 Wimbledon finalist Kevin Anderson, who’s trying to get his career back on track after a couple difficult years.
ATP Newport Day 1 Predictions
Jenson Brooksby vs Evgeny Donskoy
Head to head: first meeting
A match between two players outside the top 100, a veteran in Donskoy against and up-and-coming Brooksby. It’s a very difficult match to call, it could genuinely go either way. If forced to make a pick, you’d go with the veteran’s superior experience playing on this surface.
Prediction: Donskoy in 3
Steve Johnson vs Denis Kudla
Head-to-head: Johnson 5-1 Kudla
Despite the apparently lopsided head-to-head, the last meeting was won by Kudla at the 2018 Australian Open. Kudla also put up a very creditable performance against Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon, coming very close to taking a set off the eventual champion, while Johnson lost a hard fought second round to Taylor Fritz. It should be a very tight match with tiebreaks involved, but Kudla has generally fared better on this surface and should have the slightest of edges.
Prediction: Kudla in 3
Jordan Thompson vs Cedrik-Marcel Stebe
Head to head: Stebe 1-0 Thompson
Their one previous meeting was back in August 2017 and Thompson won only one game in the final of the Vancouver Challenger. Things have changed a lot in the past four years, however, and right now Thompson seems to have a clear edge. The Australian has had a very impressive grass season so far, surpassing all expectations by beating Rudd and Nishikori at Wimbledon, while Stebe has been struggling a lot for a while and hasn’t won a match so far this grass season.
Prediction: Thompson in 2
Kevin Anderson vs Illya Marchenko
Head-to-head: Anderson 3-0 Marchenko
Although Anderson leads the H2H 3-0 (2-0 in Slams), the last meeting between these two players was over 8 years ago. Their only match on grass was at Wimbledon 2011, where Anderson won in 5 sets. These matches tells us very little about how this matchup might pan out in 2021, but you still have to favor Anderson, who’s shown some signs of returning to form despite a predictable straight set loss to Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon.
Marchenko has never shown any kind of aptitude on this surface and should theoretically not pose too much resistance to the South African giant.
Prediction: Anderson in 2
Main Photo from Getty.