The ATP Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati begins its first full day of play and the draw looks really good including Rafael Nadal’s return. The draw does not include the champions of the last two years – Djokovic and Zverev – but several former champions including Daniil Medvedev, the aforementioned Nadal, Marin Cilic, Grigor Dimitrov and Andy Murray. It should be a great tournament and as always, we’re giving our picks. We predict all matches of the day. In addition to this article, we have three more on this day. A feature Sebastian Korda vs Karen Khachanovthe second headline Denis Shapovalov vs Grigor Dimitrovand the third function Andy Murray vs Stan Wawrinka. Who do you think will win?
ATP Cincinnati Day 2 Predictions
Roberto Bautista Agut vs. Francisco Cerundolo
Head to head: first meeting
Cerundolo is a aspiring player, but probably mainly on clay, since he plays this surface almost exclusively. He’s limited to just eight tough games on the ATP Tour and hasn’t seen many under his belt at the lower tiers. Meanwhile, Bautista Agut loves hard court with eight career titles, including one this year. He was a semifinalist here in Cincinnati in 2020 and is a very experienced player who should be able to take advantage of his opponents’ lack of experience. I feel a little daring to call this two-part, but the Argentine’s ranking is mostly clay at this point.
Prognosis: Bautista Agut in the 2nd
Emil Ruusuvuori vs. JJ Wolf
Head to head: first meeting
JJ Wolf sticks his head up between fights on the ATP Tour from time to time Challenger Tour, and he tends to beat a decent player every time he does. But in Washington he showed he meant business with victories over Holger Rune and Denis Shapovalov en route to the quarterfinals. It’s a nice warm-up for Cincinnati, and he faces a decent hard court player at Ruusuvuori. The Finn showed his skills with a recent win over Hubert Hurkacz in Washington and both players should be hungry for victory on their favorite surface. The difference in this case could be the crowd, which should be pulling hard for Wolf in his native Ohio.
Prediction: Wolf in 3
Matteo Berrettini vs Frances Tiafoe
Head to head: Berrettini 1-0
Berrettini will likely ache after his first-round elimination in Montreal, though eventual champion Pablo Carreno Busta did. That came after three straight finals and two titles, although hard is by far Berrettini’s least proficient surface. Tiafoe is playing about as much as Berrettini on hard this year and is a little below him in winning percentage on the surface, despite winning a title to Berrettini’s null. The Italian is having a very good season although I don’t trust him on hard and Tiafoe is inconsistent in his level of play. This one is difficult to call, but Berrettini has the edge.
Prognosis: Berrettini in the 3
Main photo by Getty.