TennisSection previews the 2021 Dubai Open as Karen Khachanov (8) meets Jeremy Chardy in the Third Round on Wednesday, March 17th 2021.
Will Jeremy Chardy continue to cause upsets left, right, and centre on the ATP Tour as he enters this Third Round match? Will Karen Khachanov be able to raise his level against an opponent who is extremely powerful and different to any of his recent opponents he has played against in recent weeks? Both players have some momentum behind him, but only one will make their way to the Quarter-finals. Who will it be?
Jeremy Chardy put on a superb comeback performance in the Second Round on Monday, beating the heavy favourite Alex de Minaur, coming backing from a set down. Chardy struggled throughout the first set to get his mojo in check and he often hit the ball to far. However, in the second and third set, he found the right length, continuously hitting the lines and moving Alex de Minaur around the court a lot. Chardy is a very dangerous player, especially when underestimated, and he has shown this over the last few weeks. Just a few weeks ago, Chardy nearly became the player to stop Rublev’s ATP 500 streak in the Quarter-finals, pushing him right to the limit. Although he came up short there, it has clearly given him lots of confidence to show his skillset. How far can Jeremy Chardy go here in Dubai this week?
Karen Khachanov came through an extremely tough Second Round encounter against the up and coming and in form Australian, Alexei Popyrin. Khachanov won the first set, and in the second set seemed to be feeling good about his game. However, Popyrin was able to hang in there long enough for Khachanov to let his guard down. Popyrin took the second set, and an extremely third set was under way. Khachanov was able to hang on in the third, eventually winning the match 6-3/3-6/7-6(4). Although he won, he showed us some weakness throughout that match. Karen Khachanov had been building up solid momentum for the last few weeks, but a defeat to Matthew Ebden in Marseille, and a very poor performance here in Dubai against Popyrin makes us wonder how good will he be in this Third Round encounter against a very tough opponent in Jeremy Chardy?
Karen Khachanov and Jeremy Chardy have only ever met once before, with Karen Khachanov having won that encounter. Their only encounter was in Beijing in 2019, where Karen Khachanov won in two very tight sets 7-6(0)/7-6(5). This is most definitely going to be a very tight encounter as on paper Karen Khachanov should win this, however, based on recent form, Jeremy Chardy has been playing better. This one is very tough to call, but I do expect this match to be a long one. I cannot call who will win it, but I can call that this match is going to be a 3-setter which will be decided by a few points.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: 3 Sets In The Match.