Maharashtra Open 2020, Day 2 review: Rosol eliminated, Gunneswaran advances to 2nd round
India's top player Prajnesh Gunneswaran was in action on Day 2 of the Tata Open Maharashtra 2020, as well as veteran Lukas Rosol and number 8 seed Egor Gerasimov. Former top 100 player Jiri Vesely also managed to produce a good performance, and Ilya Ivashka put his name in the second round as well with a dominant win over Russia's Evgeny Donskoy.
Here, we look at every result in depth, and analyse the chances that the winning players have of progressing further in the tournament:
Roberto Marcora defeated Lukas Rosol (6-3, 6-2)
We started the day in Pune with quite an upset. After he got through the qualifiers rather easily, it was surprising to see Lukas Rosol being defeated by an inexperienced player like Roberto Marcora.
The Italian player has qualified for only one ATP-level tournament in the last 10 years, and that tournament took place on clay back in 2017. Outdoor hard is not necessarily Marcora's best surface, so this is probably the most important win of his career.
For Rosol, this result is quite worrying. He had a good chance to do well in an ATP tournament, but he blew the chance away.
It will be interesting to see if Rosol can regain his form from the qualifiers - where he beat Ernests Gulbis and Matthew Ebden - going forward.
Marcora is scheduled to face number one seed Benoit Paire in the next round of the tournament.
James Duckworth defeated Peter Gojowczyk (7-6, 6-4)
In what was supposed to be one of the most balanced first-round matches here in Pune, James Duckworth scraped past Peter Gojowczyk to get to the second round. The Australian player has had a good start to this season, and if he is able to stay away from injuries, it will be interesting to see what he can bring to the main tour.
Gojowczyk looked better than in his previous matches here, but Duckworth was simply the stronger player in the key moments of the match. As it was expected from their player profiles, both players dominated with their serves, and there weren't a lot of break opportunities in the match.
Duckworth did not dominate the entire match, but he managed to save both of the break points that his German opponent created. The Aussie now has a great chance now to advance past the next round as well, where he will most likely face a tired Taro Daniel - who is coming off a long Challenger tournament in Australia.
Egor Gerasimov defeated Paolo Lorenzi (6-2, 6-3)
Egor Gerasimov's first-round performance against Italian veteran Paolo Lorenzi solidified his status as one of the tournament favorites. The Belarusian got Lorenzi him without any kind of problems, in what was quite a dominant performance.
Gerasimov broke Lorenzi four times in the match, and he himself got broken only once. A win against Lorenzi on a fast court such as the one in Pune is quite significant for Gerasimov, who is yearning for consistency on the ATP tour. If he can keep up this level of play throughout the week, then he has a very good chance of winning a first ATP-level title.
Gerasimov will face Nikola Milojevic in the next round.
Nikola Milojevic defeated Antoine Hoang (7-6, 6-4)
Nikola Milojevic cruised through the qualifiers here in Pune, and he confirmed his good level of play in the first round against a difficult opponent. After defeating a local Indian wildcard and Robin Haase in the qualifiers, Milojevic got past Antoine Hoang in the first round.
Milojevic is not a very experienced hardcourt player, as his best results have come on clay, but here in the first round he was in control throughout. Hoang had just one break point in the entire match, and was constantly under pressure on his own serve.
Ilya Ivashka defeated Evgeny Donskoy (6-3, 6-2)
Truth be told, many would have expected a tougher first round match for Ilya Ivashka here. Evgeny Donskoy had won both of their previous meetings on hardcourts, and the veteran Russian was expected to be a threat for Ivashka in this match. But Ivashka came up with a commanding performance, showing tha his style of play is well-suited to these fast courts.
Ivashka broke Donskoy four times in the match and got broken only once, saving 3 out of 4 break points. Donskoy's main problem was his consistency, as he was not able to maintain a good level for more than two games in a row. On the other side, Ivashka didn't really take his foot off the gas.
The Belarusian will face Stefano Travaglia in the second round of the tournament.
Jiri Vesely defeated Arjun Kadhe (6-2, 6-4)
Jiri Vesely managed to win this clash in straight sets, but not before facing a few questions from his spirited Indian opponent - especially in the competitive second set.
Still, Vesely did not face a single break point in this first round match, and will now look forward to his second round clash against Salvatore Caruso. The Italian got past local favorite Ramkumar Ramanathan to get to the second round, and he will be a tough opponent for Vesely.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran defeated Yannick Maden (7-6, 7-6)
Local favorite Prajnesh Gunneswaran managed to get past the first round in Pune today, as he defeated German player Yannick Maden in straight sets after surviving two tie-breaks.
It was an match that was mainly dominated by the good serves of both players, as we saw just two breaks in the entire match. Gunneswaran was able to play better in the key moments of the match, and that was the biggest difference in the end.
This was an important test for the Indian player, as he prepares now to face a much tougher opponent in the second round. Kwon Soon-woo is enjoying a good run of form at the moment, and his clash with Gunneswaran is going to be one of the most interesting matches in the second round.
Published 05 Feb 2020, 11:48 IST