Fixture: Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Dusan Lajovic
Date: 25 September 2020
Tournament: Hamburg European Open 2020
Venue: Hamburg, Germany
Category: ATP Masters 500
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €1,062,520
Match timing: Not before 1.30 pm CEST, 5 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - ESPN / Tennis Channel | India - Sony Six
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Dusan Lajovic preview
No. 2 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas has been in strong form at Hamburg this week, winning both his matches in straight sets. He first saw off Daniel Evans with a 6-3, 6-1 scoreline, before following it up with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Pablo Cuevas in the Round of 16.
The Greek player had a bit of a torrid time in the aftermath of his semifinal appearance at the Cincinnati Masters last month. He was knocked out in the third round of the US Open despite holding six match points, and then suffered a demoralizing second-round loss to Jannik Sinner in Rome.
The 22-year-old will be keen to make amends in Hamburg, particularly with Roland Garros fast approaching.
Dusan Lajovic, meanwhile, has had a perfect tournament at Hamburg himself so far. He has conceded just eight games in two rounds, winning both matches in straight sets.
Despite being up against the experienced Adrian Mannarino in his opening match, Lajovic won with a lopsided 6-4, 6-1 scoreline. He then extended his perfect record against Karen Khachanov to 4-0, winning 6-1, 6-2 in the second round.
Lajovic looked in decent touch in his first two matches at the Rome Masters, before losing 6-1, 6-3 to Rafael Nadal in the third round. Nonetheless, the Serb will be confident ahead of the quarterfinal, especially since clay is the one surface where he has a positive win-loss record.
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Dusan Lajovic head-to-head
Stefanos Tsitsipas and Dusan Lajovic have met twice on tour so far, with both players winning one game each; their head-to-head is thus tied at 1-1.
The duo first faced off in the first round of Wimbledon 2017, where Lajovic won 6-4, 6-4, 6-4. Tsitsipas broke even at the Beijing Open last year, fighting back from one set down to win 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.
The pair have met on grass and hard courts so far, but this will be their first clay encounter on tour. They did face off on the surface in the qualifiers of the Rome Masters in 2018 though, where Tsitsipas won in straight sets.
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Dusan Lajovic prediction
Stefanos Tsitsipas, the youngest member of the ATP top 10, will aim to use his strong physique and movement to tire out the 30-year-old Dusan Lajovic.
The 22-year-old will be desperate for a strong performance at Hamburg, and is likely to come out all guns blazing in the quarterfinals given that he is so close to his first claycourt title of the year.
Lajovic, however, will also be keen to make the most of his top form. The Serb's kick serve is particularly potent on clay, and he will be keen to win a few quick points through it against Tsitsipas.
This is a major chance for Lajovic to win his maiden ATP 500 title, and he's likely to go for it as hard as Tsitsipas, if not harder.
Prediction: Dusan Lajovic to win in three sets.Published 25 Sep 2020, 00:42 IST