Mannarino and Darcis appear fairly closely matched. Mannarino started the year with a Challenger title in Noumea. He moved to the Australian Open where he had to win through the qualifying rounds to reach the main draw. Unfortunately he came up against Del Potro in the first round and that was that.
Darcis played in the same Challenger event but lost in the second round to 203 ranked Martin. His first round match in the Australian Open was against Kohlschreiber and irt was no surprise that he lost in 3 sets. He did play Davis cup for Belgium last week and beat Zimonjic in straight sets.
The French tend to do well in their own country although Mannarino’s record isn’t exactly superb. However I feel he is in better current form. Darcis will need to serve well and is more than capable of upsetting the Frenchman who starts at 1.55 on Betfair.
I will be waiting for a better backing price on Mannarino.
Update: Darcis played some solid tennis but Mannarino was way below his best.
Darcis won 6-4, 7-6.
More to come….Hmm I forgot I hadn’t finished the post.
Stakhovsky plays another Frenchman, Mathieu. Lets see if this one performs better than the others.
They have played just once before which was also on an indoor hard court. Mathieu won that one quite comfortably in straight sets.
Mathieu is perhaps better prepared for the match. Stakhovsky was playing Davis Cup at the weekend where he lost to Lacko in 4 sets.
Mathieu starts at 1.45 which is a little low. If he plays his very best tennis he will again win this easily. However he retired from his semi final in the Heilbronn Challenger a week ago with a leg injury.
I’ll be waiting to see if Mathieu is moving well before getting involved. he is one of the French players that really responds to a home crowd and as this is an evening match there should be a decent turn out. If Mathieu looks ok I want at least 1.65 to 1.70 before getting in on him.
Update: Stakhovsky won 6-4, 6-4.