TennisSection previews the 2021 Antwerp Open as Reilly Opelka (5) meets Jenson Brooksby in the First Round on Tuesday October 19th, 2021.
An “All-American” clash awaits us here in the First Round of the 2021 Antwerp Open in Belgium. The big-serving Reilly Opelka will face Qualifier and countryman Jenson Brooksby in what is sure to be a high quality encounter. Brooksby has been one of the surprise packages this year, and seemingly came out of nowhere and currently sits well within the top 100. Does he have what it takes to cause the massive upset here and send his more illustrious countryman packing?
Reilly Opelka is the fifth seed here at the 2021 Antwerp Open and is currently ranked #25 on the ATP Tour. The American #1 has been a very consistent performer on the ATP Tour over the past few seasons, highlighted by a Semi-Final run in Rome and reaching the Final at the Canadian Open. Opelka possesses one of the biggest weapons on the ATP Tour with his serve, and will undoubtedly be counting on that to take him past his fellow American Jenson Brooksby, who has had an outstanding season. Reilly is the massive favorite here as he has a massive advantage in both experience and ranking, and it will be a major shock if he was to lose here.
Jenson Brooksby is currently ranked #70 on the ATP Tour and came through the Qualifying Rounds here at the 2021 Antwerp Open, winning both of his matches in straight sets to reach the main draw. The 20 year old has been one of the standout “Next Gen” players on the tour, and looks like he will have a promising future. He announced himself in the big leagues with a Semi-Final run at the Washington Open, and then proved that was no fluke by reaching the Round of 16 at the US Open, falling to world number one Novak Djokovic. He brushed aside both of his Qualifying opponents easily, serving very well and hitting cleanly from both sides. His chances of success in this match against Reilly Opelka will firmly depend on how well he can cope with his opponent’s serve, which is a major threat on this surface.
This will be the first meeting between the two players on the ATP Tour, and it is sure to be an exciting one for tennis fans. Reilly Opelka has really established himself as one of the best players in the world, and Jenson Brooksby is a very promising young player who seems ready to take the leap into the top 50 of the rankings. I expect a close match with at least one tiebreaker, but ultimately Reilly Opelka will win and advance. His serve will be too much for Brooksby to handle, and that will be the difference here. Jenson is a fighter and will make it competitive, but he will fall short here, as Opelka moves on to the Round of 16 at the 2021 Antwerp Open.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Reilly Opelka to win in straight sets
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