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US Open 2020: Michael Mmoh vs Joao Sousa preview, head-to-head & prediction

Michael Mmoh locks horns with Joao Sousa in the first round of US Open 2020
Michael Mmoh locks horns with Joao Sousa in the first round of US Open 2020
Mihir Gawade
ANALYST
Modified 30 Aug 2020, 14:06 IST
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Match details

Fixture: Michael Mmoh vs Joao Sousa

Date: 31 August 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: Not before 5:30 pm EDT, 3 am IST

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

Michael Mmoh vs Joao Sousa preview

Portugal's pride Joao Sousa faces young American Michael Mmoh in the first round of the 2020 US Open.

Sousa's form this year has been disastrous. The 31-year-old has managed just one win in six matches thus far, which came against Julius Tverijonas, an opponent ranked 791 in the world, in Portugal's Davis Cup Group 1 tie against Lithuania back in March.

Before his Davis Cup victory, Sousa was on an eight-match losing streak that stretched back to October last year. He has played just one match since returning from the enforced COVID-19 break, losing to Poland's Kamil Majchrzak in the first qualifying round of the Western & Southern Open.

Joao Sousa has experienced a steep decline in form since late 2019
Joao Sousa has experienced a steep decline in form since late 2019

On the other hand, Michael Mmoh recorded his first Grand Slam main draw win at the Australian Open this year when he defeated Pablo Andujar. He also took a set off World No. 9 Roberto Bautista Agut in the second round before losing in four.

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Aside from that, the 22-year-old American, ranked 184 in the world, has not had too much success on the main tour, although he has won five titles on the Challenger circuit, the most recent coming in Knoxville last November.

Michael Mmoh vs Joao Sousa head-to-head

Mmoh and Sousa have never faced off before
Mmoh and Sousa have never faced off before

The first-round match at US Open 2020 will be the first career meeting between Joao Sousa and Michael Mmoh.

His recent struggles notwithstanding, Sousa has been a regular feature on the ATP Tour for the past seven years, last playing on the Challenger circuit in 2013, while Mmoh is still working his way up from the lower rungs of men's tennis.

Michael Mmoh vs Joao Sousa prediction

Joao Sousa will look to get his season back on track with a decent run at the US Open, the site of his best Grand Slam performance, having reached the last 16 two years ago.

His fighting spirit and mental toughness has drawn praise from some of the top players in the circuit and he will be hoping to use his wealth of experience, as well as his strong serve and forehand, to outlast his younger opponent.

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Michael Mmoh, meanwhile, will be looking to improve on his 1-6 win-loss record at Grand Slams. The 22-year-old enters Flushing Meadows in better form than his Portuguese opponent but his lack of experience remains a concern.

Prediction: Michael Mmoh to win in four sets.

Published 30 Aug 2020, 14:06 IST
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