An all-German affair takes place in the second round of the Zagreb Indoor event between top seeded Tommy Haas and Benjamin Becker. This marks the third time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, having split their first two encounters back in 2008 and 2009. The head-to-head stands at 1-1.
German No. 1 Tommy Haas has not had the best of starts to his 2014 season. The world No. 12 is 0-2 heading into his second round match in Zagreb, having lost his opening match in Auckland and retiring in the first round of the Australian Open against Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, due to an injury. Haas also missed the Davis Cup tie last weekend to fully recover and prepare himself for the Zagreb indoor event. This marks the first time Haas will take part in this event, and it will be interesting to see if he can pick up his first ATP World Tour win of the season in his upcoming contest against his fellow countryman.
World No. 93 Benjamin Becker played an outstanding first round match to arrive at this stage of the event, saving seven match points to defeat Jesse Huta Galung 6-7(4), 6-3, 7-6(6) in two hours and 22 minutes.
The majority of the action took place in the third set, where Becker trailed 2-5 on serve and managed to save 2 match points and followed up by saving three more match points on Huta Galung’s serve to break back at 5-4. After working towards a tiebreak, Becker once again fell 5-1 down but saved another two match points before hitting snatching the victory at 6-6 in the breaker.
Having split their previous two encounters on the tour, Hass and Becker stand at 1-1 in their FedEx Head-to-head series but have not played against each other since 2009. Since then, Haas has performed better on the tour, raising himself back into the Top 20 in the world. Barring any issues with his injury, this should be a contest that Haas should win in three sets, as Becker has proven to be a resilient yet not unbeatable.
Prediction: Tommy Haas in Three Sets