TennisSection previews the Tokyo 2020 Olympics as Daniil Medvedev takes on Alexander Bublik in the Round of 64 on Saturday, July 24th, 2021.
Will Alexander Bublik pull off a stunner to move through? Will Daniil Medvedev get a good win under his belt to kick off his campaign? Friday’s contest will definitely be one to watch, as two of the most entertaining players on tour will clash. Who will move on to the Round of 32 at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics?
Daniil Medvedev is coming into this tournament with a lot of confidence, considering he’s currently the second best hard court player in the world, and of course, holds the no.2 ranking on the ATP Tour. While he would have hoped to do better at Wimbledon, he got a tough break against a great player, and his level of play despite that was still very high throughout Roland Garros and Wimbledon. Now he’s back to his favorite surface, where he very much has a chance to win gold for Russia, considering it’s best of three. Tomorrow, he’ll have to get a lot of returns in play, and if he can do that, he’ll be able to dictate from the back of the court pretty easily, being able to outplay Bublik there. Of course, he’ll need to make sure he can take care of his own serve, as Alexander is one of those players who can raise their level very high out of nowhere. Medvedev should be able to get it done, but it’s certainly not an easy match.
Alexander Bublik is coming into this matchup with not very much confidence, considering who his opponent is. It is possible for him to pull it off, especially if he can serve as well as we know he can. In my opinion, Bublik is in the top 5 servers on tour right now, he’ll just need to make sure he doesn’t get broken, which is very hard mentally and physically against Medvedev since he has one of the best returns on tour and is able to put a lot of balls in play. Even still, if his first serve percentage is high, Daniil will have trouble being able to break it, giving Bublik some confidence there. In between the serves and returns, Bublik is clearly at a disadvantage to Medvedev, however, he has great ground strokes and I think if he is able to really cut off the angles and mix in lots of slices, he can through Medvedev off and use his heavy forehand to pull him off the court, where he should be able to close pretty easily. That’s the kind of pattern he’ll want to be looking for, but it’s of course way easier said than done.
Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Bublik have played twice before, with Daniil Medvedev leading the head to head 2-0. Their first meeting was a while ago, when neither player was too known, so we won’t look into that much. However, their last meeting came very recently at the first round of the French Open, with Medvedev surprisingly winning in straight sets. The reason it was surprising was due to the fact that Medvedev had very bad results on clay in his career, especially at Roland Garros, but he came out and whooped Bublik in three easy sets. It was on clay, so that made breaking serve easier, however, it tells me that Bublik gets uncomfortable playing someone like Medvedev, and that’s why I think Daniil will be able to break his serve tomorrow multiple times, without the need for tiebreakers. This contest should be a good one, who will move on to the Round of 32 at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics?
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Daniil Medvedev to win.
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