Following a disappointingly short stay in Toronot, Stan Wawrinka will look to get back on the horse in Cincinnati in his final tune-up event ahead of the US Open. He will begin his campaign at this event in the second round, where he will meet Benjamin Becker for the third time on the professional tour. This will serve as the rubber match between the two competitors, as Becker defeated Wawrinka in 2008 before Wawrinka leveled the head-to-head series at 1-1.
In his first hard court tournament of the US Open Series, world No. 4 Stan Wawrinka managed one win against Benoit Paire before losing to Kevin Anderson in the third round of the tournament. It was a poor showing from Wawrinka, who lost in straight sets to the inspired South African to end his stay in Toronto as quickly as it began.
Germany’s Bejamin Becker has quietly strung together a variety of wins since the start of the US Open Series. He reached the semi-final in Atlanta (lost to Dudi Sela) and then lost in the second round in Washington to Santiago Giraldo. After an unlucky lose to Fabrice Martin in the opening round of the Rogers Cup qualifying round, Becker rebounded with three straight wins in Cincinnati.
Becker defeated Tatsuma Ito and top North African Malek Jaziri to reach the first round of the Western & Southern Open. On Monday, he bested Ivo Karlovic in straight sets to secure his spot in the second round of the tournament against Wawrinka. The German withstood 17 aces and two break point opportunities from his opponent to close out the 7-6, 6-4 win in 80 minutes.
This marks the third time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with the head-to-head series tied at 1-1. Although the Swiss No. 2 did not have the best of starts to his hard court run here in North America, he should have a better week in Cincinnati, starting with a straight sets victory over Becker.
Prediction: Stan Wawrinka in Straight Sets