Valencia R2 previews and picks: Montanes vs. Brands, Paire vs. Sousa

The Grandstand

Paire 3Albert Montanes and Daniel Brands are set to face each other for a second time at the same tournament on Thursday in Valencia. Second-round action also features a showdown between Benoit Paire and Joao Sousa.

(LL) Albert Montanes vs. (Q) Daniel Brands

It will be rare occasion when two players go head-to-head twice at the same tournament when Montanes and Brands meet again at the Valencia Open, this time in the main draw. The two veterans previously collided in the final round of qualifying, with Brands dominating 6-3, 6-2. Montanes got a spot when fellow Spaniard and No. 1 seed withdrew on Wednesday following his title last week in Vienna. Their only prior encounter came on the clay courts of a Challenger event in 2009, when Montanes won 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

Brands, who thought he would be facing Ferrer, had not won a single ATP tournament match since beating Ferrer…

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