An intriguing clash takes place tomorrow afternoon between Polish No. 1 Jerzy Janowicz and France’s Adrian Mannarino in the second round of the Open Sud de France. While the two have previously met on the challengers tour, in a contest that Mannarino won, this marks the first time the two competitors meet on the professional tour.
Adrian Mannarino won one of the three all-French encounters of the day in Montpellier, overcoming fellow countryman and lucky loser Vincent Millot in straight sets. The world No. 72 produced strong showing to reach the second round, winning 88 per cent of points on his first serve to finish the match 6-4, 6-4 in 76 minutes. The Frenchman will now be rewarded with a tough second round contest against Jerzy Janowicz, yet while it is far more of a challenge than his opening round match, it is also a match he could very likely win.
The Polish No. 1 has had far from the perfect start to his 2014 season. After two 3+ hour contests in Melbourne, Janowicz exited the season-opening Grand Slam in the third round to Florian Mayer, but would later reveal that he was still suffering from a foot injury that was diagnosed in the off-season. It appears that Janowicz had broken a bone in his foot and it had not entirely healed in time for the Aussie Open, and he was even advised by his doctors to withdraw from the event. Considering those details, it will be interesting to see how Janowicz, who received a bye into the second round, will perform this week in Montpellier.
While Mannarino holds a victory over Janowicz at the Caltanissetta Challenger in 2009, this will mark their first ever ATP World Tour encounter. The biggest factor in this contest is Janowicz’s injury and whether it will impact his performance tomorrow against Mannarino. Considering his is yet to withdraw from the event, it is likely that he feels healthy enough to perform, having had three weeks to rest and recuperate.
Prediction: Jerzy Janowicz in Three Sets