16:00 – Harrison v Ljubicic
Rankings are 220 and 17. Head to heads are 1-0 to Ljubicic.
Harrison had to come through the qualifying rounds so he has some games under his belt. Ljubicic lost in the first round 2 weeks ago to Nalbandian and hasn’t played since. He may be a little short of match practice.
On paper this should be an easy win for Ljubicic but Harrison has a big serve and if Ljubicic is a little slow to get started he may be in trouble in the opening set.
Harrison serves 64% of first serves in and holds serve 83% of the time. Ljubicic hits 58% of first serves and holds 67% of the time.
Ljubicic converts 44% of break points chances to Harrison’s 30%.
Ljubicic needs to work out Harrison’s serve quickly ( their only previous meeting was in March and Ljubicic won in straight sets). If he is unable to break and his own service game is a bit rusty we could see the American take the first set.
Watch the opening couple of games. If Ljubicic looks sharp then back him on serve. If he looks to be struggling then just back Harrison on serve.
An in form Ljubicic should take it in 3 or 4 sets.
Update: Ljubicic looked more tired as the match went on. Harrison was inspired and had the support of the crowd.
Harrison won 6-3, 6-7, 6-3, 6-4.
21:00 – Sela v Malisse
Rankings are 95 and 50. Head to heads are 1-0 to Sela. ( last month on a hard court, 3 sets)
Sela’s preparation for this tournament was to play a Challenger event in Vancouver. He won the title.
Malisse reached the semi final of the Legg Mason Tennis Classic losing to Baghdatis in straight sets. In that tournament he beat Berdych, Isner and Benneteau.
Sela doesn’t do so well in the Grand Slams and has lost 7 in a row in best of 5 set matches.
First serve percentages are 57% and 58% and they hold serve 79% and 82% of the time. Malisse saves 65% of break points against him.
Whilst Sela’s win on the Challenger Tour will no doubt give him lots of confidence he was up against lesser players. Malisse has been up against the big boys and has come out of those matches with a lot of credit.
I expect a close first set and Malisse to take the match in 3 or 4 sets.
Back Malisse on serve.
Update: Very poor from Malisse and Sela served extremely well.
Sela won 7-6, 7-5, 6-2.