Date: 27 October 2020
Tournament: Erste Bank Open 2020
Round: First round (Round of 32)
Venue: Vienna, Austria
Category: ATP 500
Surface: Indoor hardcourt
Prize money: €1,409,510
Match timing: Approx. 4 pm local time, 8.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - ESPN / Tennis Channel | India - Sony ESPN
Novak Djokovic vs Filip Krajinovic preview
Novak Djokovic will be looking to secure a record sixth finish as the year-end World No. 1 by doing well this week in Vienna. However, he might find some resistance from fellow Serb Filip Krajinovic in his opening match.
Djokovic would have been disappointed at not taking advantage of his title favorite status in Paris a couple of week ago. The Serb started his French Open campaign in epic fashion and withstood some inspired hitting from Greece's Stefanos Tsitsipas to reach the final, but he couldn't put up much of a challenge for Rafael Nadal.
The World No. 1 will be looking to get over that loss and end a bittersweet 2020 on a strong note. Djokovic needs to win at least two matches in Vienna to guarantee a sixth year-end No. 1 finish.
World No. 30 Filip Krajinovic meanwhile had looked in good form after the tour restarted in Cincinnati. He reached the quarterfinals of the Masters 1000 event, followed by a third-round exit to Belgium's David Goffin at the US Open. The Serb then reached the Round-of-16 in Rome, where he lost to eventual champion Djokovic.
However, Krajinovic suffered a surprise first-round defeat to qualifier Nikola Milojevic in the first round of Roland Garros. The Serb hasn't gotten back to winning ways yet, starting his indoor hardcourt season in Cologne with a first-round loss to America's Steve Johnson.
Novak Djokovic vs Filip Krajinovic head-to-head
Novak Djokovic and Filip Krajinovic are tied 1-1 in their head-to-head. The two faced each other recently at the Italian Open, with Djokovic winning 7-6(7), 6-3.
Novak Djokovic vs Filip Krajinovic prediction
While the head-to-head record reads 1-1, Filip Krajinovic did also beat Novak Djokovic in the unofficial match during the ill-fated Adria Tennis Tour. Krajinovic certainly has the tools to trouble the World No. 1; he is a solid baseliner who doesn't go for the lines much, but hits with consistent depth and weight.
Djokovic has struggled to generate pace on his backhand of late, and has had to depend on his reflexes to redirect flat shots. The Serb, however, is getting a lot of free points on his first serve this year, which will be particularly useful on indoor hardcourt.
Djokovic also has a far better forehand than Krajinovic, and is more efficient at finishing points quickly. If he is hitting freely, he should be expected to win without much trouble.
Prediction: Novak Djokovic to win in straight sets.Published 26 Oct 2020, 11:19 IST