TennisSection previews the 2021 Sofia Open as Miomir Kecmanovic meets Gianluca Mager in the Round of 16 on Wednesday September 29th, 2021.
Both Miomir Kecmanovic and Gianluca Mager entered the 2021 Sofia Open in the midst of a dismal run of results and will have been hoping to have a solid showing here to get their seasons back on track. They both won their First Round matches in straight sets and will have built up some much needed confidence ahead of this Round of 16 clash. Who will get the win and advance to the Quarter-Finals here in Sofia?
Miomir Kecmanovic is currently ranked #62 in the world and is unseeded here at the 2021 Sofia Open. The talented Serbian was ranked as high as #38 just a few months ago, but has been in terrible form lately and his ranking has plummeted. After a poor run during the US Open series he will have been delighted to have won his First Round match, a tight straight sets win over Bulgarian Wild Card Adrian Andreev. Kecmanovic has a very solid all-around game and is a capable player on the quicker surfaces, so he should be considered the favorite here against his next opponent Gianluca Mager. The only thing counting against him is his lack of confidence, he is not playing like his usual aggressive self and that can only be corrected by continuing to win. If he can keep his error count low and serve at a high percentage he should be able to outlast his Italian opponent here, but that is far from a given with his recent form.
Gianluca Mager is unseeded here at the 2021 Sofia Open and is ranked #78 on the ATP Tour. Like his opponent Miomir Kecmanovic he has been in very poor form lately, and not much was expected from him here in Sofia. Despite his recent poor form he was outstanding in his First Round win over sixth seed Adrian Mannarino, a stunning upset given his recent results and the Frenchman’s prowess on this surface. He served extremely well and was very aggressive, not giving Mannarino much chance. While the performance seemed like a bit of a fluke it should not be discounted, and while he is still the underdog here against Kecmanovic, that win will have given him a lot of belief that he can continue his run here.
This will be the second meeting between the two players on the ATP Tour with Kecmanovic winning their only previous encounter, a five set battle last year at the US Open. This is a pretty difficult match to call since both men had been in such poor form heading into this event, but all things considered I am going to go with Miomir Kecmanovic to win here. He has the more explosive game and has a lot more firepower than his Italian opponent. Gianluca Mager looked good in his First Round win, but part of it was his opponent making him look good by making numerous errors. I am expecting a tough match with both men not at their best, and it will likely be strewn with errors. However, the Serbian has the higher upside and now that he has a little of his confidence back I think he will win a close one here, advancing to the Quarter-Finals of the 2021 Sofia Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Miomir Kecmanovic to win in 3 sets.
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