TennisSection previews the 2021 Sofia Open as Jannik Sinner (1) will face James Duckworth in the Quarter-Finals on Friday October 1st, 2021.
Can the in-form Aussie James Duckworth upset the number one seeded Jannik Sinner? Duckworth has been in breathtaking form over the past two weeks, reaching the Final last week in Astana and continuing that momentum into the 2021 Sofia Open. The Italian will be his toughest test so far, can he cause the huge upset and advance to his second successive Semi-Final on the ATP Tour?
Jannik Sinner is currently ranked #14 in the world, more than 40 spots ahead of his current opponent James Duckworth. The Italian has long been known as one of the most promising young players in the world but has finally broken through over the past year, winning three titles in that span. The 20 year old is the defending champion here at the 2021 Sofia Open, and is the big favorite to repeat. His big serve and huge baseline game is perfectly suited to this quick indoor surface, and he will be looking to control this match using those weapons. This is his first tournament after a strong Round of 16 showing at the US Open, and he started well here, defeating Egor Gerasimov in straight sets. He is the favorite here against the Aussie Duckworth, but knows that his opponent is in career-best form and has done well lately on this surface, so he should not be underestimated.
James Duckworth is ranked at a career-high #56 on the ATP Tour, and is unseeded here at the 2021 Sofia Open. The Australian is in the form of his life, and reached his first ever ATP Final last week in Astana where he lost to Soon-Woo Kwon. While he does not have a huge weapon, he is very aggressive from the baseline and things have just been clicking for him lately, making very few unforced errors. While he has been impressive lately he has not yet come up against an opponent of the caliber of Jannik Sinner, and is the big underdog here against the defending champion. Wins over Emil Ruusuvuori and Benoit will have added to his already high confidence and he will be backing himself here given his momentum.
This will be the third meeting between the two players on the ATP Tour, with the head to head series tied at 1-1. Interestingly, Jannik Sinner easily on this surface last year in Cologne, but James Duckworth got his revenge this year, defeating the Italian at the Masters-1000 event in Canada. This looks like a mismatch on paper with Sinner being ranked much higher and being the defending champion, but Duckworth’s form should be considered here. While he is playing at an unbelievable level I don’t think that it is quite enough to get the win here. Sinner is simply on another level and should come away with a tough victory here. He simply has too much firepower for the Aussie to handle, and he will advance to the Semi-Finals here at the 2021 Sofia Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Jannik Sinner to win in straight sets
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