An intriguing contest between world No. 5 Tomas Berdych and Dmitry Tursunov is scheduled to take place on Tuesday afternoon in the second round of the Monte Carlo Masters. It would mark the ninth time these two competitors will meet on the ATP World Tour, with the Czech No. 1 leading the head-to-head series 7-1. Berdych also won their two most recent encounters in 2013.
This season has certainly been an improvement for Tomas Berdych, who captured his first title in 16 months at Rotterdam, where he defeated Marin Cilic in dominant fashion. It brought his overall record in ATP World Tour finals to 9-11. He also became first Czech to win the Rotterdam Open since Radek Stepanek achieved the feat in 2006. Following his success in the Netherlands, Berdych would see his his career-best 11-match winning streak end with a tight three-set loss to Roger Federer in Dubai. While he lost in the second round at Indian Wells, he reached the semi-finals in Miami but on 28 was forced to withdraw ahead of his scheduled contest versus Nadal due to gastroenteritis.
Former world No. 20 Dmitry Tursunov broke an impressive losing streak on Monday afternoon, when he picked up his first Monte Carlo victory in four attempts with a 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 victory over beat Robin Haase. The win sets up a second round meeting with the fifth seed Tomas Berdych. The world No. 33 holds a 6-9 record on the tour this season with his best performance this season being a semi-final appearance in Sydney.
This marks the ninth time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with Berdych leading the head-to-head series 7-1. Tursunov has not beaten Berdych since 2006 and has lost their last six consecutive encounters. This will be the first time they meet on the red clay surface, yet it will ultimately result in a similar ending.
Prediction: Tomas Berdych in Straight Sets