Opening round action continues on Day 2 of the ATP 250 clay-court event in Banja Luka on Tuesday. This is the inaugural edition of the tournament in Bosnia & Herzegovina, which is being held in place of the Serbia Open this year. We also predict the rest of the day’s matches in a separate article. Who do you think will win?
ATP Banja Luka Day 2 Predictions
Roman Safiullin vs Laslo Djere
Head-to-head: First meeting
Safiullin has won just one of his six matches at ATP level in 2023. The World No. 108 won the Koblenz Challenger title on indoor hardcourts in February, but has lost seven of 11 matches at all levels since. Laslo Djere holds a solid 10-9 tour record this year and is 4-4 on clay. The Serb lost in three tiebreaks to Hubert Hurkacz after holding a match point in Monte Carlo last week. The World No. 78 is at his best on clay – with an impressive 75-51 career record on the surface. The 27-year-old – a two-time ATP titlist on clay – should be too strong for an out-of-form Safiullin.
Prediction: Djere in 3
Radu Albot vs Federico Coria
Head-to-head: Coria 1-0 (1-1 including ATP qualifying)
Albot downed Aldin Sektic and Dimitar Kuzmanov without dropping a set to qualify in Banja Luka. The 33-year-old Moldovan has a 23-35 tour claycourt record, but is at his best on hardcourts–on which he won his only ATP final in Delray Beach. Coria, however, is a claycourt specialist and boasts a healthy 36-30 win/loss ratio on the surface at ATP level. The 31-year-old Argentine is a two-time runner up at ATP 250 events on clay, including in Cordoba in February. Coria has lost four straight matches since reaching the Cordoba final and has not played since the Miami Open last month. The World No. 76 should, though, still have enough to get past his 110th-ranked opponent.
Prediction: Coria in 3
Richard Gasquet vs Dino Prizmic
Head-to-head: First meeting
Gasquet has had a steady 2023 so far, with eight wins and eight losses to his name on the main tour. Five of those victories came in Auckland in January, where the 36-year-old claimed a 16th career ATP 250 title. The World No. 42 lost his only two matches on clay in straight sets to Alexandre Muller and Dominic Thiem in Marrakech and Monte Carlo respectively. Prizmic qualified for the event with straight-set triumphs over Mattia Bellucci and Liam Broady. The 17-year-old Croatian has reached the quarterfinals of Challenger tournaments on clay in his home country in his last two events. The World No. 342 has won five ITF titles and lost his only previous ATP match by retirement as a wildcard in Umag last year. Gasquet’s vast experience and success at this level of event should see him through against the rising Prizmic.
Prediction: Gasquet in 2
Damir Dzumhur vs Liam Broady
Head-to-head: Dzumhur 1-0 Broady (1-1 including ATP Challenger level)
Dzumhur has lost all three of his tour level matches this year, two of which came in the Davis Cup in February. The 30-year-old, currently ranked 202nd, has a 34-37 ATP record on clay. The former World No. 23 has won three ATP titles, though none were on clay. Broady has won one of his two tour matches this year, but defeated Dzumhur en route to winning the Vilnius Challenger on indoor hardcourts in February. The World No. 132 was also a runner-up at the Biel Challenger on the same surface last month. Dzumhur has the advantages of playing in his home nation of Bosnia & Herzegovina and greater claycourt experience. This, along with his higher ceiling level, may see the wild card edge out the the Brit, who entered as a lucky loser.
Prediction: Dzumhur in 3