TennisSection previews the 2022 Qatar Open as Andy Murray takes on Roberto Bautista Agut in the second round on Wednesday, February 16th, 2022.
Andy Murray avenged his most recent loss to Taro Daniel on Tuesday and sets up a blockbuster Round of 16 match against Roberto Bautista Agut at the Qatar Open. Will the Briton defy the odds and reach the quarterfinals?
Andy Murray eased his way into the second round of the Qatar Open by beating his Australian Open conqueror Taro Daniel. Murray set the record straight on his return to Doha, and was keen to remind us that Melbourne defeat was just a one-off. The two-time champion of this event made light work of his Japanese opponent, serving four aces and winning 25 out of 28 first-serve points in the whole match. The contest lasted an hour and 20 minutes and he overcame a minor blip in the second set to close out a comfortable 6-2 6-2 win.
Roberto Bautista Agut, the second seed got a first-round bye, but was certainly having an eye on Andy Murray’s match. The Spaniard, who is a former champion of the Qatar Open, is 7-3 for the season and comes to Doha on the back of a quarterfinal defeat at the Rotterdam Open. Bautista Agut’s penchant for hard courts in recent years has made him a formidable challenger and it is no surprise to see him being ranked highly in the list of outright winners this week. Can he cut down Murray’s lead in their series when they take to court on Wednesday?
Andy Murray owns a 3-1 head-to-head record over Roberto Bautista Agut. It is pertinent to note, all of the Briton’s three wins over the Spaniard came before his career-threatening hip surgery. Bautista Agut would then win that memorable meeting at the Australian Open in 2019 which was expected to be Murray’s last match on a tennis court. It is quite remarkable that Murray has managed to turn a page in his career since then and remaining competitive. There are still no guarantees regarding his long-term future and you bet Murray will leave it all out on court once more on Wednesday. But I doubt it would be enough against Bautista Agut, whose athleticism might just prove to be superior to that of Murray.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Roberto Bautista Agut to win.
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