Fixture: (4) Karen Khachanov vs James Duckworth
Date: 13 October 2020
Tournament: St. Petersburg Open 2020
Round: First round (Round of 32)
Venue: St. Petersburg, Russia
Category: ATP 500 Series
Surface: Indoor Hard Courts
Prize money: USD 1,243,790
Match timing: Approx. 5 pm Moscow Standard Time, 7.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - ESPN / Tennis Channel | India - Sony Six
Karen Khachanov vs James Duckworth preview
24-year-old Karen Khachanov has tapered off a little bit since peaking at No. 8 in the rankings last July. But he has still been inside the top 20 for almost two years now, and is currently ranked No. 17.
After the end of lockdown, Khachanov reached the third round of the US Open, losing to 21st seed Alex de Minaur. He then made the fourth round of the French Open where he lost to World No. 1 Novak Djokovic.
Many feel Khachanov has a lot more potential than what he has shown so far, and the Russian would be hoping to use the indoor hardcourt surface at his home tournament to his advantage.
His opponent is the 28-year-old James Duckworth, who is currently ranked No. 93 in the world. The Australian reached the semifinals of the Maharashtra Open in Pune in February and followed that up by winning an ATP Challenger title in Bengaluru.
Since the resumption of the tour, Duckworth has lost in the first round of the US Open and the French Open, and in the second round of qualifying at Rome.
Karen Khachanov vs James Duckworth head-to-head
This will be the first meeting between Karen Khachanov and James Duckworth, so their head-to-head currently stands at 0-0.
Karen Khachanov vs James Duckworth prediction
James Duckworth underwent surgery on his shoulder earlier this year, the latest in a series of major injuries for him. He may not be as match-fit right now as he would have liked, but the Australian has been on the tour for many years and he's always a tough out.
Karen Khachanov comes into the match as the big favorite, especially given that he is playing in familiar surroundings. But the Russian will need to ensure that he serves big and hits through his groundstrokes effectively, because Duckworth certainly won't give him too many easy points.
Prediction: Karen Khachanov to win in three sets.Published 12 Oct 2020, 14:59 IST