An all-French third round berth is scheduled to take place on Sunday afternoon in Miami, as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Gael Monfils will meet for a sixth time on the professional tour. Tsonga leads the head-to-head series 4-1 and will look to continue his comeback with a win over his countryman.
The Frenchman began his 2015 season with a successful comeback match against Tim Smyczek, whom he defeated in three sets to secure his spot in the third round of the tournament. Tsonga hit 11 aces and broke serve twice, including a decisive one in the final set, to close out the match in one hour and 51 minutes. It wasn’t the prettiest match but it was certainly an achievement considering the long layoff and he was clearly satisfied with the outcome nonetheless.
“I played pretty solid. I just had a little hole in the second set. But, it’s normal when I haven’t played in a couple of months now. I hope it’s going to be better and better, but for the first match it was already something good for me.”
His opponent, Gale Monfils, rallied from a set down to earn a place in the third round of the Miami Open. He defeated Croatia’s Filip Krajinovic 3-6, 6-2, 7-6(4). The Frenchman hit four aces, 69% of his first service points and converted four break points to secure the win in one hour and 58 minutes.
Tsonga and Monfils will now meet for the sixth time on the ATP World Tour, with Tsonga leading the head-to-head series 4-1. He also won their last two consecutive meetings dating back to 2012. However, given his long layoff and rusty showing early on, this is a difficult match to predict. It is quite possible that Monfils could pull off the upset if Tsonga is not able to rely on his full strength.
Prediction: Gael Monfils in Three Sets
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