TennisSection previews the 2021 Moselle Open as Alexei Popyrin meets Holger Rune in the First Round on Tuesday September 21st, 2021.
A close match is expected here between two exciting young talents as the Australian Alexei Popyrin does battle with Holger Rune of Denmark for a spot in the Round of 16 here at the 2021 Moselle Open. The 18 year old came through the Qualifying Rounds here in Kazakhstan with a couple of close three set wins but will now face his biggest test so far in Popyrin, a first time title winner this year on the ATP Tour. Can the Dane cause the upset? Or will the impressive young Aussie win as expected, advancing to the Second Round?
Alexei Popyrin is unseeded here at the 2021 Moselle Open and is ranked #72 on the ATP Tour. The young Australian had long been considered a very promising yet inconsistent player, until he stormed to the title in Singapore. Many would have hoped that was the start of some consistent performances on the ATP Tour but that has not been the case. He arrives in Kazakhstan in pretty good form, having reached the Third Round at the US Open before falling in five sets to Dan Evans. Popyrin is equipped with a huge serve and forehand, who weapons that will be particularly effective on these quicker indoor hard courts and he enters this match against Holger Rune as the big favorite, especially given his superior experience and the surface.
Holger Rune is ranked #133 on the ATP Tour and has been having a solid second half of the season so far, performing very well on the Challenger Tour and notably winning a set off eventual Finalist and world number one Novak Djokovic at the US Open. The young Dane started solidly here at the 2021 Moselle Open, defeating veterans Thomas Fabbiano and Phillip Kohlschreiber in three sets in the Qualifying Rounds and will be hoping for a solid showing in the Main Draw as he attempts to break into the top 100 for the first time. While the youngster is a very talented player and has been playing some fearless tennis, he does not have much experience on this indoor hard surface and his game is more suited for clay where he has had most of his success. He is a fighter however, so while he is the underdog here against Alexei Popyrin he should not be underestimated.
This will be the first meeting between the two players on the ATP Tour and I am expecting a close affair despite the gap in the rankings. Alexei Popyrin is the obvious favorite here due to his greater experience but he is not exactly a pillar of consistency, while Holger Rune has turned heads with some impressive performances lately. While I think the young Dane is a very talented player and is one to watch for the future, I don’t expect him to win this match on this surface. He has played almost exclusively on clay recently, and Popyrin won his only title on a similar surface earlier this year. This won’t be one way traffic and I expect Rune to put up a fight, but ultimately the Aussie will win a tough match here, advancing to the Round of 16 here at the 2021 Moselle Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Alexei Popyrin to win in 3 sets
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