Tursunov v Darcis: Tursunov leads the head to heads 1-0. Darcis needed 3 sets to get past Gil in the last round. Tursunov took Gael Monfils to a second set tie break In the Legg Mason tournament.
Both have decent serves and Darcis will need his to be at its best today. I think this could be close with just 1 break between them in each set but I expect Tursunov to come out on top.
Update: Tursunov took the opening set easily but after that he faded badly and Darcis won 3-6, 6-1, 6-3.
Nieminen starts as favourite against Istomin. I am always amazed when Istomin wins a match regardless of who he was playing. Nieminen leads the head to heads 1-0 which was on a hard court in Miami this year. He won in 3 sets.
Nieminen hasn’t had many wins since he returned from his break but he has been close in several of them.His improved serve should get him some cheap points against Denis who is almost guaranteed to have a bad first set against any half decent opponent.
Istomin has played a lot of tennis recently and I expect him to start slowly. Whether Nieminen can finish him in 2 sets I just don’t know but I would expect him to win the match.
Update: It would have been a surprise Isto win and it looked on the cards when he took the first set. Nieminen came back to win 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.
Rezai has been having a tough time of it over recent months but perhaps is putting some of that behind her. She reached the quarter finals of the Baku Cup last month.
Today she is up against Rybarikova and leads the head to heads 2-0. As Rezai is now ranked 107 she has had to come through the qualifying rounds where she performed well.
Rybarikova is coming back after injuryto her left foot and admits that she isn’t moving well.
I think Rezai should be able to take care of this match but would be wary of backing her at 1.57 . I will be watching the opening games and waiting for a price nearer evens before getting involved.
Update: Rybarikova’s class showed through in the first set and was able to take the set. I suspect that she ran out of steam after that as rezai came back to win 4-6, 6-2, 6-1.