Fixture: (14) Jannik Sinner vs Alexei Popyrin
Date: 5 May 2021
Tournament: Mutua Madrid Open 2021
Round: Second round (Round of 32)
Venue: Madrid, Spain
Category: ATP Masters 1000
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €2,614,465
Match timing: Approx. 3 pm local time, 6.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel | UK - Amazon Prime Video
Jannik Sinner vs Alexei Popyrin preview
Jannik Sinner scored a win in his Madrid Open debut on Tuesday, coming through a first-round encounter against Guido Pella - who had to retire mid-way through the second set due to injury. Sinner has now set up a second round meeting with another talented youngster in the form of Alexei Popyrin.
Popyrin has already notched up a few match wins in Madrid this week. Having come through the qualifiers, he caused a bit of an upset in the opening round by taking out the seasoned Jan-Lennard Struff.
These results, however, are hardly surprising given that the Aussie has been playing some good tennis throughout 2021.
In addition to taking home his maiden ATP crown in Singapore, the youngster has reached a career high of No. 76 in the world rankings. He will be keen on extending his run of good form when he takes the court on Wednesday.
Jannik Sinner vs Alexei Popyrin head-to-head
This is set to be the first career meeting between Jannik Sinner and Alexei Popyrin, so their current head-to-head stands at a 0-0 deadlock.
Jannik Sinner vs Alexei Popyrin prediction
Both Jannik Sinner and Alexei Popyrin play similarly aggressive games and have been in good form in the lead-up to the encounter, which could well end up being a close affair.
Sinner's performances over the course of the season have been particularly impressive. The Italian is not far from being counted as one of the most consistent performers on the ATP tour.
A title in Adelaide and a final run in Miami have been major highlights, but he has posted solid results even outside of these tournaments.
Sinner has also managed a successful transition to clay, having reached the last four in Barcelona last month. Needless to say, he will be brimming with confidence ahead of the second-round clash.
The 19-year-old will be up against some big serving from the other end of the court as Popyrin has posted solid numbers in that department throughout the week. But Sinner has done well to handle the pressure against the likes of Andrey Rublev and Egor Gerasimov in recent matches.
The Italian can certainly expect a tough fight on Wednesday. But if he can maintain his intensity for long periods - something he has done in most of his other big matches - he might end up having too much firepower for Popyrin.
Prediction: Jannik Sinner to win in two tight sets.