BNP Paribas Masters defending champion David Ferrer (Player Profile) continues his quest for to capture his second title here in Paris when he encounters Frenchman Gilles Simon (Player Profile) in the third round of the tournament. The Spaniard leads the head-to-head 4-1, with Simon’s only win dating back to 2011.
The World No. 3 has had a turbulent few weeks on the tour, suffering two back-to-back finals losses in Valencia (lost to Mikhail Youzhny) and Stockholm (lost to Grigor Dimitrov). He rebounded with a decent performance against Lukas Rosol, which he won in three sets 6-0, 2-6, 6-3. The Spaniard won his first ATP Masters title in Paris last year when he defeated Polish No. 1 Jerzy Janowicz in the final, and will be looking to successfully defend his title en route to the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. He has compiled a 57-20 record on the tour this season.
Simon fought a gruelling battle against fellow countryman Nicolas Mahut to reach the third round in Paris. The encounter lasted just under three hours and was an entertaining and competitive contest that ended with a 6-4, 6-7(5), 7-6(3) scoreline. Simon had plenty of opportunities to end the match but failed to do so, partly because of Mahut’s resilience yet Gilles found a way home in the deciding tiebreaker, which he won 7-4.
The most competitive meeting between these two players was the one that Simon won in the third round of the Cincinnati Masters back in 2011. Their last two encounters which took place on clay both ended in straight sets favouring the Spaniard and tomorrow’s match will likely be more of the same. If one was to consider a potential upset, it would be because of Ferrer’s recent inconsistency and not because of Simon’s odds against him.