The one match everyone was waiting for yesterday was the big showdown between Dominic Thiem and Stefanos Tsitsipas and the match did deliver on its promise. The match was important for the Austrian as after his injury he has not achieved the form he once had but in recent weeks there has been signs of improvements and his first round match was another sign. The match started well for Thiem and it was almost as if he was playing tennis similar prior to injury, he was aggressive and was playing with some impressive and heavy topspin. This play gave Thiem the first set by the score of 6-3. The Greek world number 5 was not going to lay down and upped his game to take the second set 6-1. Thiem did falter and kept his composure as did Tsitsipas and neither player lost there serve and the match deservedly went to a third set tie-break. Thiem took a 3-1 lead in the Tie-break but the greek star caught up and took the tie-break 7-5. Nonetheless both men can be happy with their performance and we will expect to see Thiem in latter stages of tournaments once again.
In other matches we saw Ben Shelton to continue to improve his clay court skills but narrowly lose out to on form Jan-Lennard Struff 4-6, 7-6, 7-5. Aslan Karatsev had a very good and unexpected win against Munich finalist Botic Van De Zandschulp with a score of 6-2, 7-5. Dusan Lajovic carried on his good form by beating world number 9 Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2, 3-6, 7-6. Good wins also for the 2 Americans Francis Tiafoe and Taylor Fritz who beat Etcheverry and O’Connell is straight sets respectively.
Less matches to be played today but we have some cracking ones with Alcaraz v Dimitrov and Rune v Davidovich Fokina standing out. Here are my predictions for Sunday’s matches:
Rune 2-1 Davidovich Fokina
Arnaldi to beat Munar
Bautista Agut to beat Khachanov
Hurkacz 2-1 Coric
Hanfmann 2-0 Altmaier
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