Carlos Alcaraz is going to play his first match since Shanghai when he takes on Roman Safiullin in Paris. Is this a potentially tricky draw for the World No. 2? In other encounters, one of the remaining Turin contenders, Hubert Hurkacz, faces Sebastian Korda for the third time this year. Who do you think will prevail at the ATP Paris Masters?
ATP Paris Masters Day 2 Predictions
J.J. Wolf vs Mackenzie McDonald
Head-to-head: McDonald 1-0
Seems like a toss-up with the two Americans hardly maintaining a steady level. J.J. Wolf especially might have the higher ceiling of the two, but he’s also more mercurial. He did make it through the qualifying, but was handed one of the easiest draws with a retirement from Bernabe Zapata Miralles and then a completed match with another clay specialist Spaniard in Roberto Carballes Baena. However, Mackenzie McDonald has never done well in Paris and these slow indoor hard courts take his strengths away a bit more than they do Wolf’s.
Prediction: Wolf in 3
Arthur Fils vs Daniel Altmaier
Head-to-head: First meeting
Daniel Altmaier has never defeated a top-50 opponent on hard courts (0-12), and on paper just looks like a very easy opponent for Arthur Fils here. Is that what we’re going to see when they show up to play? The Frenchman didn’t threaten Daniil Medvedev last week, but after all that was an extremely tough draw. He’s still made so much progress this year, and seems like he’ll be ready to compete for more titles in 2024. He’s just 19 and can have bad days at the office, but he’s nowhere near as volatile as your usual 19-year-old prospect.
Prediction: Fils in 2
Hubert Hurkacz vs Sebastian Korda
Head-to-head: Hurkacz 2-1
They’ve already faced each other twice this year – Sebastian Korda took the Australian Open meeting in a fifth-set tiebreak but was surprisingly tight in the forecourt in their more recent Shanghai clash. The American suffered a shocking exit to Tomas Martin Etcheverry in Basel last week, a loss that shouldn’t really be happening to him these days. And while his season has been full of these ups and downs, the potential is still there, and now he’s running into a version of Hubert Hurkacz that will likely be a bit gassed from the Basel run.
Prediction: Korda in 3
Carlos Alcaraz vs Roman Safiullin
Head-to-head: First meeting
Is Roman Safiullin the most dangerous of the qualifiers? Quite possibly, maybe only to be rivaled by Marton Fucsovics in terms of the level of discomfort they could give to some top seeds. Carlos Alcaraz will not be happy about this draw as the Russian has that redline quality and a very imposing game on his day. You never really know when he’s going to deliver it, though. But if his serve +1 forehand game will be clicking, Safiullin could easily make Alcaraz work hard for this win.
Prediction: Alcaraz in 3
Main Photo Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran – USA TODAY Sports