ATP Melbourne Summer Set Day 2 Predictions Including Kevin Anderson vs Jaume Munar

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Melbourne plays host to one of the first ATP events of the season and day three promises to be another great day of tennis. Kevin Anderson will be looking to produce his best form in 2022, and he begins his season against a difficult opponent in Juame Munar. Elsewhere, there is an all-Australian battle as Jordan Thompson takes on Christopher O’Connell. Next-Gen rising star Sebastian Baez is also in action as he looks to build on his strong 2021 season. We predict all of the ATP Melbourne Summer Set matches taking place on Day 2. We look at four in this article, and four in a separate article.

ATP Melbourne Summer Set Day 2 Predictions

Sebastian Baez vs Emil Ruusuvuori

Head to Head:  First Meeting

This match promises to be a close encounter, with Baez currently residing at #99 in the world and Ruusuvuori at #95. Baez had a phenomenal year on the ATP Challenger Tour last season, winning six Titles, and he reached the semifinals on the Next-Gen ATP Finals in Milan, recording wins over Lorenzo Musetti and Hugo Gaston. Although the 21-year-old does not have much experience playing hard court events at Tour level, the Argentinian had two good wins in qualifying over Marc Polmans and Andreas Seppi, winning both matches without dropping a set. It will be interesting see how Baez fairs this season on thew main Tour.

Emil Ruusuvuori had a solid 2021 season on the ATP Tour. The Finnish player reached the round of 16 in Miami, where he recorded impressive victories over Carlos Alcaraz, Alexander Zverev, and Mikhail Ymer. Other notable results included a run to the semifinals of Atlanta and Winston-Salem, as well as a run to the quarterfinals of Astana. It is fair to say that Ruusuvuori plays his best tennis on this surface and it will be interesting to see if he can continue the good run of form he had towards the end of last season.

I think this will be a tight three set match that could go either way. However, given the fact that he has had two strong wins in qualifying, I am predicting the Argentine to get the win.
Prediction: Baez in 3

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Maxime Cressy vs Rinky Hijikata

Head to Head: First Meeting

Many will remember Maxime Cressy for his amazing match against Pablo Carreno Busta at the US Open. Cressy came back from two sets to love down and saved four match points to win in a five set epic first round match. Cressy possesses massive weapons in his game. At a height of 6ft 6, his serve is particularly potent. The Frenchman does not have much main tour experience, but he recorded a solid straight sets win in qualifying over Andrea Vavassori. Cressy is currently ranked at #112 in the world, and due to his talent and firepower, I think he will be a top 100 player by the end of the season.

Rinky Hijikata played on the ITF Futures Tour for the majority of last season and the Australian won back to back futures events in Tunisia and the USA in July. In September, Hijikata won another futures event in Switzerland and later that month he produced a strong showing at the Cary Challenger, coming through qualifying, then defeating fifth seed Jason Jung in the first round. The Australian has never played at Tour level, but got two good wins in qualifying over Denis Kudla and Henri Laaksonen. This is a good opportunity for Hijikata to test himself at Tour level.

I think Cressy will get the win in straight sets due to him having more experience at tour level and the fact that he has the ability to win more free points on his serve.
Prediction: Cressy in 2

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Christopher O’Connell vs Jordan Thompson

Head to Head: First Meeting

Jordan Thompson was particularly impressive during the grass court season last year. The Australian reached the quarterfinals in Mallorca, and defeated Casper Ruud and Kei Nishikori during a run to the third round of Wimbledon. In Newport at the Hall of Fame Championships, Thompson reached the semifinals and he continued to play well at the beginning on the hard courts, reaching back to back in Los Cabos and Atlanta. Despite not possessing major weapons in his game, the Australian has great movement and is able to wear players down from the back of the court.

Christopher O’Connell recorded a couple of impressive wins in Australia at the beginning of last season, including a win over Dominic Koepfer in Adelaide and Jan-Lennard Struff in the first round of the Australian Open. For the rest of 2021, O’Connell played mainly on the ATP Challenger Tour, as well as in a couple of Tour events. The Australian’s most impressive result on the main tour came in Atlanta where he defeated Denis Kudla and Jannik Sinner in a run to the quarterfinals. After the US Open, O’Connell reached the final of the Saint Tropez Challenger, but he unfortunately had to retire at the start of the third set.

I think this will be a close three set match. However, I think Thompson is the more consistent of the two players and I think he will get the win.
Prediction: Thompson in 3

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Kevin Anderson vs Jaume Munar

Head to Head: 2-0 Anderson

The men’s night session match on Rod Laver Arena should prove to be an interesting one. Kevin Anderson had a solid 2021 season, but it is fair to say that the South African has not produced his very best tennis since returning from injury. Currently residing at #80 in the world, it would be good to see Anderson rise up the rankings again in 2022. The highlight of Anderson’s 2021 season undoubtedly came at the Hall of Fame Championships in Newport, where the South African won the title. Anderson’s aggressive baseline style means that he will always be a threat on this surface.

Jaume Munar had a strong start to last season by winning the first Antalya Challenger. Elsewhere, the Spaniard produced his best form during the clay court season, where he reached the quarterfinals of Buenos Aires, won the Marbella Challenger and he reached the final of the ATP 250 event in Andalucia the following week. The Spaniard does not possess many weapons in his game, however the main foundation of his game is his movement and he has a good rally tempo and can force players to make unforced errors.

Despite Munar being the higher ranked player of the two, I don’t see him being able to control many points on this surface against a player with Anderson’s firepower. I expect the South African to dominate the baseline exchanges and combined with his huge first serve, I think that should see him to a straight sets win.
Prediction: Anderson in 2

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