ATP Sydney Day 1 Predictions–Including Sam Querrey vs Malek Jaziri

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As the first day of main draw action begins in Sydney, here are my preview for the top four matches of the day’s play. There are many solid players in the draw, and everyone will be looking to round themselves into top form as they prepare for the Australian Open.

Alex de Minaur vs Dusan Lajovic

Firstly, on Ken Rosewall Arena, there promises to be an engrossing encounter between Australian NextGen Star Alex de Minaur and Dusan Lajovic. Home favourite de Minaur has already made a promising start to the season in reaching the quarterfinals of Brisbane last week, losing to Jo-Wilfred Tsonga. Last year he made the final of this event and put up a valiant effort in the final losing to Daniil Medvedev. The Australian’s attacking game along with his exemplary movement on hard courts make him the strong favourite going into this match, however, Dusan Lajovic is a solid all round player and although he may not posses any real weapon to attack de Minaur, combined with the fact he is very much a clay court specialist, the Serbian will look to grind out points and get into long rallies to wear the young Aussie down.
Prediction: de Minaur in 2
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Ryan Harrison vs Yoshihito Nishioka

The second match to look out for on Dar 1 is the second match of the day on Show Court 1, between Ryan Harrison and Yoshihito Nishioka. This is the first meeting between the pair and it promises to be a very close match, as only thirteen places separate them in the rankings. Ryan Harrison has good form on the Australian hardcourts, having made the final in Brisbane last year and he was played great tennis last week despite losing to Nick Kyrgios in a final set tiebreak. Nishioka has been making steady progress on the ATP tour. An unfortunate draw for the Japanese player saw him face Grigor Dimitrov in his first match in Brisbane last week. Long rallies are to be expected in this match.
Prediction: Harrison in 3
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Reilly Opelka vs Albert Ramos-Vinolas

The second match on show Court 3 between Reilly Opelka and Albert Ramos-Vinolas will provide a match between two very different styles of play. Opelka is one of the NextGen and follows in the tradition of big serving American players, being ever taller than his fellow big-serving countrymen Sam Querrey and John Isner. Ranked #99 in the world, Opelka will be keen to consolidate himself as a top-100 player. Albert Ramos-Vinolas struggled on the tour last year, however he did make the fourth round of the Australian Open, before losing to Novak Djokovic. the Spaniard will be keen to get back to winning ways and will look to move the tall American around the court using his strong forehand.
Prediction: Ramos-Vinolas in 3

Sam Querrey vs Malek Jaziri

Furthermore, another match to look out for on Day 1 is the encounter between Sam Querrey and Malek Jaziri. Both players have had strong results on hard courts during their careers, with Jaziri recording a notable victory over Grigor Dimitrov in Dubai last year, and Querrey beating Rafael Nadal in Acapulco in 2017. Despite Jaziri being ranked higher, I expect Querrey’s big serve to provide an advantage, and for him to record a straight sets win.
Prediction: Querrey in 2

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