Dallas Open 2023 Day 2: Men's singles predictions ft. J.J. Wolf vs Brandon Holt, John Isner vs Chun-Hsin Tseng
The 2023 Dallas Open kicked off on Monday evening. Jack Sock ousted Ilya Ivashka in three sets to emerge victorious in the only main-draw singles match of the day. Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys duked it out in a friendly exhibition tie, with the latter winning in straight sets.
Fernando Verdasco and Brandon Holt were among the qualifiers to seal their berths in the main draw.
Day 2 of the tournament features plenty of well-known names in action, including John Isner, J.J. Wolf and Adrian Mannarino. Here are the predictions for all the fixtures lined up for February 7:
#1 - (7) Marcos Giron vs (Q) Alex Rybakov
Alex Rybakov defeated Jonas Forejtek and Elmar Ejupovic to not only qualify for the main draw, but also make his debut at the ATP level. He's up against seventh seed Marcos Giron. This will be the first meeting between them.
Giron's record for the year stands at 3-3, with his best result being a quarterfinal showing at the ASB Classic. Against the 378th ranked Rybakov, he'll be the overwhelming favorite to come out on top.
Prediction: Marcos Giron to win in straight sets.
#2 - Mackenzie McDonald vs (Q) Fernando Verdasco
Mackenzie McDonald scored one of the most memorable wins of his career by defeating Rafael Nadal in the second round of the Australian Open last month. However, he lost in the next round.
Fernando Verdasco is still grinding it out on the tour, but main-draw wins for the veteran have been hard to come by. He defeated Evan Zhu and Mitchell Krueger to book his place in the main draw.
Over the last three years, the Spaniard has notched just 13 wins at the ATP level. Verdasco saw some success at the Challenger level last season, but his days of besting higher-ranked opponents on the ATP tour are behind him.
Prediction: Mackenzie McDonald to win in straight sets.
#3 - (8) Adrian Mannarino vs Steve Johnson
A second-round showing at the Australian Open has been Adrian Mannarino's best result this year. This will be Steve Johnson's first ATP event of the year, having competed in a Challenger event so far, where he made it to the last eight.
Johnson leads the head-to-head 4-2. Their last meeting coincidentally took place at last year's Dallas Open, with Mannarino staging a comeback win in three sets. While the Frenchman isn't firing on all cylinders at the moment, he's arguably in slightly better form compared to his first-round opponent.
Prediction: Adrian Mannarino to win in three sets.
#4 - Jordan Thompson vs Denis Kudla
Denis Kudla fell in the qualifying rounds of the Australian Open, but got a second lease of life. He managed to secure a place in the main draw as a lucky loser and advanced to the second round. It was his first win at a Major since the 2021 US Open. Kudla's run came to an end in the second round at the hands of Ugo Humbert.
Jordan Thompson, on the other hand, is still searching for his first victory of the year. Having failed to progress beyond the opening round so far, he'll need to raise his level considerably if he wants to snap his losing streak. Kudla has won their only encounter so far, and given their respective forms at the moment, the American is likely to come out on top yet again.
Prediction: Denis Kudla to win in three sets.
#5 - (6) J.J. Wolf vs (Q) Brandon Holt
J.J. Wolf is fresh off a fourth-round appearance at the Australian Open. He has improved by leaps and bounds over the past year and reached a career-high ranking of No. 43 this week.
Brandon Holt's career is on the upswing as well. He made it to the second round of the season's first Grand Slam. He won both of his qualifying matches in Dallas in straight sets. This all-American showdown has the potential to be a closely contested battle, but the more experienced Wolf should prevail in the end.
Prediction: J.J. Wolf to win in three sets.
#6 - Radu Albot vs (WC) Liam Krall
Veteran Radu Albot will square off against youngster Liam Krall, who's making his debut at the ATP level. For the 20-year old American, this is a huge opportunity to snag a big win.
Albot lost in the first round of his only ATP event of the year in Pune and his results on the Challenger circuit haven't been that impressive either.
Krall couldn't have asked for an easier first-round opponent. If he's able to rise to the occasion, he could make a winning debut on the ATP tour.
Prediction: Liam Krall to win in three sets.
#7 - (5) John Isner vs Chun-Hsin Tseng
John Isner has had a surprisingly bad start to the year, failing to advance beyond the first round in his previous two tournaments. A semifinalist in Dallas last year, he'll be hoping to turn his season around with some support from the home crowd.
Chun-Hsin Tseng is a talented youngster, but finds himself in the same situation as Isner. The 21-year-old is yet to win a match this year as well. For one player, the losing streak is about to come to an end and most likely, it's going to be the big-serving Isner.
Prediction: John Isner to win in straight sets.
#8 - Yibing Wu vs Michael Mmoh
Michael Mmoh made the most of his second chance at the Australian Open by advancing to the third round as a lucky loser. He also knocked out Alexander Zverev in the second round.
While Wu crashed out in the first round in Melbourne, he finished as the runner-up at a Challenger event in Cleveland over the weekend. He will be feeling confident after his most recent performance. Based on their overall results, the two seem to be evenly matched at the moment, but Mmoh is likely to advance further.
Prediction: Michael Mmoh to win in three sets.