TennisSection previews the 2021 Indian Wells Open as Tommy Paul will face Feliciano Lopez in the First Round on Thursday October 7th, 2021.
Tommy Paul will do battle with Feliciano Lopez in what is a classic “youth vs experience” matchup here at the 2021 Indian Wells Open. Both men have been in a slump lately and will be hoping to put in a strong performance in order to stop the slide. Can the veteran Spaniard use his extensive experience in order to cause the upset here? Or will the young American Paul be able to delight home fans with a win here?
Tommy Paul is unseeded here at the 2021 Indian Wells Open and is currently ranked #60 on the ATP Tour. The American broke into the top 50 for the first time a few months ago but a poor run of form has seen his ranking slowly slide. He has lost his last two matches to Sebastian Korda and Roberto Carballes Baena and will be desperate to stop the skid by getting the win here over the veteran Spaniard Feliciano Lopez. Paul is a very powerful baseliner who is capable of returning very well, which should help nullify Lopez’s biggest weapon, his serve. Despite his poor recent form he should be considered the favorite here to move on to the Second Round.
Feliciano Lopez is a former top 15 player that is approaching the end of his long and successful career. Now ranked outside the top 100 at #108, the Spaniard is still a capable player at 40 years of age but is definitely not the player that he once was. His serve remains an elite weapon but he struggles with his movement and against good returners like his opponent Tommy Paul he is at a big disadvantage. While his opponent has been in poor form lately, Lopez has been worse, losing his past four matches heading into this event. He will be heavily reliant on his serve and that will have to be at it’s absolute best for him to have any chance to advance to the Second Round of the 2021 Indian Wells Open.
This will be the second meeting between the two players, with Feliciano Lopez leading the head to head 1-0. They played each other last year in Antwerp, with the Spaniard winning 6-3, 6-2 in a straightforward victory. That surface will have given more help to his serve than the courts will here at the 2021 Indian Wells Open, and Lopez is also one year older and slower than he was then. While all signs point to a victory for the American, his form has been poor and it is difficult to trust him at the moment. That being said, he is almost two decades younger than his opponent and he has a much more well rounded game. It won’t be easy as he shakes some of the rust off and builds his confidence back up, but expect Tommy Paul to win here, advancing to the Second Round of the 2021 Indian Wells Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Tommy Paul to win in 3 sets
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