Date: 27 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. 6 pm CEST, 9.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - NBC Sports / Tennis Channel | India - Star Sports Select | United Kingdom - Amazon Prime Video | Europe - Eurosport
Stan Wawrinka vs Andy Murray preview
The rivalry between Stan Wawrinka and Andy Murray is undoubtedly one of the finest in the current era of tennis. And it will have another chapter added to it on Sunday, when the two former Slam champions take on each other in the first round of the 2020 French Open.
This, however, is a rather bittersweet encounter. On one hand, fans around the world will get another chance to watch Wawrinka and Murray battle it out in what could be one of their last matches against each other at a Grand Slam. But at the same time, one of these greats will bid an early goodbye to the claycourts of Paris this year.
Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka have endured some tough injuries and setbacks in recent years, but the Brit’s misery arguably outdoes that of the Swiss. The 2016 French Open runner-up has had to undergo two career-threatening hip surgeries, and now finds himself playing with a metal hip.
Wawrinka has had his fair share of persistent injuries too, which have made him quite inconsistent since 2017. He has shown some improvement at the Slams since 2018, but fans expect a lot more from the man who once had both Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal on a string.
Andy Murray staged some impressive victories at the Cincinnati Masters last month, including a win over US Open runner-up Alexander Zverev. At the US Open he came from two sets down against Yoshihito Nishioka, but he couldn't sustain his run and went down tamely to Felix Auger-Aliassime in the second round.
Stan Wawrinka, however, took part in none of these tournaments as he decided to stay in Europe and prepare for the clay swing. The Swiss won one of the Challenger events he took part in at Prague, but at the Rome Masters he was dumped out in the very first round by teenager Lorenzo Musetti.
Stan Wawrinka vs Andy Murray head-to-head
Andy Murray leads Stan Wawrinka by a margin of 12-8 in the head-to-head. The Swiss, however, leads 4-1 in claycourt meetings.
Their most recent Grand Slam encounter was incidentally at the French Open, back in 2017. Wawrinka won that in five sets in what was arguably the finest match between the two.
Stan Wawrinka vs Andy Murray prediction
There is no denying the fact that Grand Slams bring the best out of both players, especially Stan Wawrinka. The Swiss may struggle all year round but makes it a point to do well when it matters.
Wawrinka also holds the edge when it comes to the surface they'll be playing on. The Swiss has enjoyed some of his finest successes on clay, and even comes into the French Open with a decent amount of claycourt preparation.
Andy Murray, on the other hand, has had none so far; the last time he played a match was on the hardcourts of Flushing Meadows. But the great champion that he is, he won’t go down without a fight.
Prediction: Stan Wawrinka to win in four sets.Published 26 Sep 2020, 14:20 IST