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Roland Garros: Gael Monfils vs Alexander Bublik preview, head-to-head & prediction | French Open 2020

Gael Monfils
Gael Monfils
Namit Kumar
ANALYST
Modified 28 Sep 2020, 11:12 IST
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Match details

Fixture: Gael Monfils vs Alexander Bublik

Date: 28 September 2020

Tournament: Roland Garros 2020

Round: First round (Round of 128)

Venue: Paris, France

Category: Grand Slam

Surface: Red clay

Prize money: Approx €38,000,000

Match timing: Approx. 3 pm CEST, 6.30 pm IST

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Live telecast: USA - NBC Sport / Tennis Channel | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP

Also check out: The Complete French Open 2020 Schedule 


Gael Monfils vs Alexander Bublik preview

Alexander Bublik at the 2020 US Open
Alexander Bublik at the 2020 US Open

Eighth seed Gael Monfils kicks off his Roland Garros campaign against Alexander Bublik in the first round on Monday.

Monfils has struggled to recreate his incredible form before the lockdown. After a strong start at the Australian Open, the Frenchman triumphed in Montpellier and Rotterdam, and lost a hard-fought semifinal against Novak Djokovic in Dubai.

Following the lockdown, Monfils did not travel to America and skipped the hardcourt season, citing health concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic. But since restarting on European clay, the World No. 9 has been in abysmal form.

He crashed out in the first round of both the Italian Open in Rome and the Hamburg Open, and comes into Roland Garros with very little confidence.

Monfils faces Kazakhstan's Alexander Bublik, who has yet to make a real mark on the ATP Tour. However, the World No. 56 does enter the tournament on the back of a quarterfinal finish in Hamburg, despite getting entry into the main draw as a 'lucky loser'.

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Gael Monfils vs Alexander Bublik head-to-head

The head-to-head between Gael Monfils and Alexander Bublik stands at 0-0 as the two have never played each other on tour before.

Gael Monfils vs Alexander Bublik prediction

Gael Monfils at the Hamburg Open 2020
Gael Monfils at the Hamburg Open 2020

The unpredictable nature of Alexander Bublik's playing style makes him a torrid opponent for Gael Monfils, who comes into his home Slam without the advantage of capacity crowds cheering his name.

Monfils' footwork and ability to generate pace from the baseline are part of his trademark style that make him dangerous on clay courts. But the French Open this year comes with remarkably different conditions, and the 34-year-old's serve was already off its rhythm in Rome and Hamburg. That is sure to play a critical role in Paris.

Bublik, on the other hand, looks more settled for the conditions in Paris. He possesses a big serve and equally powerful groundstrokes that are sure to test the Frenchman's resolve.

The Kazhak certainly has the skills to upset an out-of-form Monfils. If the Frenchman does not improve his play drastically, it could be a very difficult outing for him.

Prediction: Alexander Bublik to win in four sets.

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Published 27 Sep 2020, 17:59 IST
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