ATP Antwerp Day 1 Predictions Including Richard Gasquet vs Stan Wawrinka

Richard Gasquet in action ahead of the ATP Antwerp Open.

The action continues in a busy October as the ATP Antwerp Open welcomes a star-studded field for its seventh edition. There will be three main draw matches on day 1, including an intriguing clash between two veterans. As always, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, but who will reach the second round in Antwerp?

ATP Antwerp Day 1 Predictions

Tim van Rijthoven vs Alexander Erler

Head-to-head: van Rijthoven 1-0 Erler

This is a qualifying match but represents a big opportunity for Tim van Rijthoven to make his move towards a top 100 ranking. It would be a real shame if the Dutchman falls at the last hurdle given the kind of fairytale run he put together during the grass-court swing. His opponent, Alexander Erler, is a giant of a man at 6 foot 4 and shocked Evan Furness in the first round of qualifying on Saturday at long odds. Van Rijthoven, however, will reap the reward of playing tour-level tennis on a consistent basis. And his class should show in this match.

Prediction: Van Rijthoven in 2

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Jenson Brooksby vs Jack Draper

Head-to-head: Draper 1-0 Brooksby

Jack Draper won so resoundingly against Brooksby in their only meeting on home turf at Eastbourne. But he arrives in Antwerp under a cloud of uncertainty regarding his fitness. The 20-year-old hasn’t played since retiring in his third-round match at the US Open due to a hamstring injury. He was not ready to compete in Sofia, withdrawing from the event on short notice. Even though Brooksby was out of sorts in Florence this past week, I fear he might add to Draper’s agony here.

Prediction: Brooksby in 3
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Dan Evans vs Tallon Griekspoor

Head-to-head: Evans 1-0 Griekspoor

Evans looks like a decent outsider to win his first Tour-level title of the season this week. The British one-hander reached the semifinals of this tournament in his only appearance in 2020, just before he burst onto the scene as a late developer. His opponent Tallon Griekspoor is on a dreadful run of form, losing in each of his last five matches excluding the Davis Cup. Last week, the Dutchman was outplayed by an out-of-form Aslan Karatsev in Florence before he retired midway through the second set. It is a tough ask to expect Griekspoor to bounce back, particularly against a player of Evans’ tactical intelligence.

Prediction: Evans in 2
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Richard Gasquet vs Stan Wawrinka

Head-to-head: Gasquet 2-1 Wawrinka

Two of the ATP’s most elegant one-handers will go toe-to-toe in the last match of the day at the ATP Antwerp Open. While both are very much in twilight of their careers, that shouldn’t diminish the spectacle both are capable of serving too much. Richard Gasquet won the inaugural event back in 2016, but his subsequent trips to Antwerp have been rather uneventful, losing in the first round in his last three participations. His effort cannot be questioned, but his performances have been little short inept in the last few weeks, losing three matches on indoor hard courts.

Stan Wawrinka, for his part, has been playing his best tennis of the year. He reached his first ATP semifinal of the season in Metz where he earned his best win since his comeback by beating Daniil Medvedev. But the Swiss had very little left in the tank in his match against Bublik, retiring after only three games. Wawrinka did not take long to resume competition, taking a wildcard in Astana. However, he had no answer to Adrian Mannarino’s flat-hitting in Kazakhstan. Against Gasquet, he is likely to find more joy in attacking the Frenchman at will.

Prediction: Wawrinka in 3

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