The European indoor swing comes to a close in Marseille, France with the Open 13. The tournament is headed by the top two ranked Frenchman Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga while 2010 champion Michael Llodra is amongst the rest in the draw.
Check out the Full Draw Here: ATP Marseille 2014 Draw
After a final in Montpellier, Gasquet disappointed in Rotterdam with a straight sets loss to Philipp Kohlschreiber. He will be expected to make the final and should see little competition in his quarter of the draw at least. Blaz Kavcic doesn’t have much of an indoor record at all, preferring the clay, while wildcard Thanasi Kokkinakis will be taking part in his first main draw match indoors. He retired at 3-0 down in the third set against Lukasz Kubot in Rotterdam qualifiers this past week.
Another youngster in Kyle Edmund is also gifted a wildcard and will face Tobias Kamke in the first round. Much of Edmund’s success on the professional level has come on American clay so the shift to indoor hard courts could be problematic for the Brit. The third wildcard in the quarter will be big serving Albano Olivetti. It was this tournament two years ago that Olivetti broke through with victory over Mardy Fish. Results have been few and far between since then but a quarter final in Montpellier was promising. First up for Olivetti is Ivan Dodig.
Ernests Gulbis defeated defending champion Juan Martin Del Potro in Rotterdam but failed to pick up the title, exiting at the semi final stage. He is third seed here and will be in the mix once more. He will play either Roberto Bautista Agut or Dustin Brown in round two. Brown, who is 1-0 against the Spaniard, showcased his extraordinary shot making skills once more this past week at the Bergamo Challenger.
Jan Hajek provides one of the many qualifiers with a great chance for victory in round one. Amongst those hoping to qualify are Daniel Evans, Ricardas Berankis and Adrian Ungur. Nicolas Mahut squeezes in as eighth seed and opens against Kenny de Schepper in an all-French clash. As expected with these two players, breaks are at a premium and there has been one tiebreak in each of the meetings between the two with Mahut leading 2-1 both in tiebreaks and the overall head to head.
In amongst Julien Benneteau‘s 9 finals losses is the 2010 defeat by Michael Llodra. Benneteau has always proved handy indoors and should have too much for Jesse Huta Galung who continues to struggle on the main tour while a qualifier or Jan-Lennard Struff aren’t the most threatening of roadblocks to a quarter final place for Benneteau.
Llodra will always remain a dangerous floater on indoor French courts despite disappointing results elsewhere in the year. He plays Lukas Lacko for the chance to take on fourth seed Andreas Seppi. While Seppi has won the last two matches against Llodra, he trails the head to head 2-3 and lost to Llodra at this tournament in 2008. Seppi is 1-3 on the year with losses to Marinko Matosevic and Donald Young doing little to inspire confidence.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga should sail through his quarter barring a major surprise. Igor Sijsling was excellent in making the Rotterdam semi finals but won’t have home crowd backing this week and may be due to a letdown. Sijsling plays Nikolay Davydenko, who lost to Albano Olivetti in his last outing. Tsonga is 4-0 against the other seed in his section, Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Roger-Vasselin and Sergiy Stakhovsky both play qualifiers with the winners facing each other in round two.
SF: Richard Gasquet def. Ernests Gulbis
SF: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga def. Julien Benneteau
F: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga def. Richard Gasquet