As the WTA tournament in Doha ends, the ATP tournament at the same venue kicks off. From last week, we know the conditions are likely to be heavy and blustery which could benefit a few of the players in our latest list of predictions, particularly defending champion Roberto Bautista Agut, who has played fantastically here over the years. We share our predictions for the second day of matches.
ATP Doha Day 2 Predictions
Roberto Bautista Agut vs Marton Fucsovics
Head-to-head: Bautista Agut 2-1 Fucsovics
It’s almost comical to see Marton Fucsovics in Challenger draws. The Hungarian took a step down to ease his comeback from injury and tore his way to the title in two out of the three tournaments he played over the last few months. He’s almost certainly playing above his ranking of #78.
Given his rally temperament, he’ll have the slightest chance against Roberto Bautista Agut. History cannot be ignored however with the Spaniard holding a ludicrous 13-2 record here including two titles and one final appearance. #1, #4, #8, #22, #27–it hasn’t mattered what his opponent’s ranking has been here, Bautista Agut has swept through them all.
Prediction: Bautista Agut in 2
Tallon Griekspoor vs Quentin Halys
Head-to-head: Halys 1-0 Griekspoor (all levels)
This one will be tight. After Novak Djokovic said he was playing ‘top 10 tennis’ in Adelaide, he took the third top 50 win of his career against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in Montpellier, making the quarters there and in Auckland. In quicker, steadier conditions, we’d we go as far as to back Quentin Halys by a whisker.
In Doha, though, the serve will be tested by the dense air and windy conditions limiting the Frenchman’s best weapon just a touch. With more points being dictated by the baseline, Tallon Griekspoor should be given the chance to take off with his forehand under pressure.
Prediction: Griekspoor in 3
Emil Ruusuvuori vs Dan Evans
Head-to-head: First meeting
Another incredibly tight match. At any given tournament, it’s not a stretch to say Dan Evans’ base level would slightly trump Emil Ruusuvuori’s (there’s a good reason for them being #29 and #51 respectively). The conditions in Doha however suit the Finn’s game, his ability to attack with his return and unload on his forehand exemplified by the heavy air. We think Ruusuvuori will eek out a very close contest.
Prediction: Ruusuvuori in 3
Main Photo Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports