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US Open 2020: Casper Ruud vs Mackenzie McDonald preview, head-to-head and prediction

Mackenzie McDonald
Mackenzie McDonald
ANALYST
Modified 02 Sep 2020
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Match details

Fixture: Casper Ruud vs Mackenzie McDonald

Date: 1 September 2020

Tournament: US Open 2020

Round: First round (Round of 128)

Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA

Category: Grand Slam

Surface: Outdoor hardcourt

Prize money: $39,024,000

Match timing: 11 am EDT, 8.30 pm IST

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Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN | India - Star Sports / Hotstar

Casper Ruud vs Mackenzie McDonald preview

California-born Mackenzie McDonald is set to play his first Grand Slam match in a over a year at the 2020 US Open. The 25-year-old will be looking to get back to winning ways at his home Slam, after a disappointing past few months.

McDonald was once ranked as high as No. 57, regularly making news for upstaging big names in Major tournaments. But he has struggled to sustain the initial success over a long period of time.

A few months away from the game and a loss of form saw him drop out of the top 200, and it is a long way back up the rankings. The draw at the US Open hasn't done him any favors either, as the American is set to face the in-form 30th seed Casper Ruud in a tough opening match.

Casper Ruud won his first ATP tour title at the start of the year.
Casper Ruud won his first ATP tour title at the start of the year.
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The Norwegian made a great start to the year by winning a few matches at the ATP Cup. He backed that up with his first title on the clay-courts of Buenos Aires, and later another final in Chile.

The 21-year-old has really found his stride in the last year or so. And while his best results continue to come on clay, he has proven to be dangerous on all surfaces.

Ruud isn't the most explosive of players, but he has a solid baseline game and a strong serve to fall back on. He doesn't give away too many free points, and doesn't mind slugging it out from the back of the court.

Ruud shares these qualities with his opponent for the day and in some sense, this one could very well feel like a clay-court match.

Casper Ruud vs Mackenzie McDonald head-to-head

McDonald is yet to win a main draw match at the Flushing Meadows
McDonald is yet to win a main draw match at the Flushing Meadows

The two men have never crossed paths on the tour before, so their head-to-head stands at a 0-0 deadlock.

As for their performances in New York in the past, there's still very little to choose between the two. Both Ruud and McDonald are still searching for their first main draw win at the tournament, and will be looking at this match as the potential opportunity to end the drought.

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Casper Ruud vs Mackenzie McDonald prediction

On paper, Casper Ruud is the favorite to come out on top in this match. And given his form coming into the tournament, most would expect him to have a rather easy outing.

The Norwegian still needs to be vigilant at all times, as he has been prone to the occasional upset on the surface. Mackenzie McDonald definitely has the game to match up to his opponent, but playing a five-set battle against an in-form opponent would be a tough ask.

Prediction: Casper Ruud to win in four sets.


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Published 01 Sep 2020, 12:56 IST
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