TennisSection previews the 2021 Dubai Open as Roberto Bautista Agut (4) meets Matthew Ebden (SE) in the Second Round on Tuesday, March 16th 2021.
Will Matthew Ebden continue causing shocking upsets as he did just last week at the 2021 Marseille Open, reaching the Semi-Finals? Will Roberto Bautista Agut be able to bounce back after a very tough and shocking loss to Nikoloz Basilashvili just last Saturday at the 2021 Qatar Open? Both players have been playing some solid tennis recently, but who will come out on top here in this second round match? Will it be the favourite Roberto Bautista Agut, or the underdog Matthew Ebden?
Matthew Ebden has been able to cause some shocking upsets recently, making the Semi-Finals of the 2021 Marseille Open, beating the likes of Karen Khachanov along the way. Ebden had to retire halfway through the Semi-Final match against Daniil Medvedev due to an injury. Matthew Ebden was granted entry here in Dubai as a ‘special entry’ due to the withdrawal of the No.7 seed, Stan Wawrinka, prior to the tournament commencing. This has both its positives and negatives for Matthew Ebden. It is great as he is able to play another tournament, and he has been handed a Bye into the second round. However, it also has his negatives, as he has had to travel quite quickly from Marseille to Dubai and have to be ready to play on Tuesday after he retired on Saturday with an injury in Marseille.
Roberto Bautista Agut was in superb form all week last week, beating the two title favourites of the 2021 Qatar Open, Dominic Thiem and Andrey Rublev. Roberto Bautista Agut entered the Final in Qatar as the heavy favourite, and he had been playing the best tennis he has been playing in a while. However, he was faced with a shocking result. Nikoloz Basilashvili was able to utilize the freedom of not caring whether he won or lost as he was never supposed to be there in the Final, and he did not feel any pressure. Basilashvili won the match in two sets 7-6(3)/6-2. Roberto Bautista Agut will be disappointed in the result, but he should also look at that week with a positive view as he was able to beat both the world No.4 and No.8. Can RBA build on this momentum as he meets Matthew Ebden?
Roberto Bautista Agut and Matthew Ebden have met twice before, with Roberto Bautista Agut leading the head to head 2-0. Although Matthew Ebden has been playing some great tennis recently, and has risen from No.287 to No.221 just in the last week, I do not see him getting anything out of this match on Tuesday. Ebden will not have had enough time to get his body back at 100%, get his game used to these conditions, and get used to the time difference. On the other hand, Roberto Bautista Agut has only travelled from Qatar and has not got any injury issues coming into this match. I expect this to be a quick match, and a match where Ebden will only care to come in, cash in his second round check, and go back home. Roberto Bautista Agut will win this in straight sets.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Roberto Bautista Agut in Two Sets.