Washington, DC 2016: ATP Championship Prediction

Two in a row for Ivo?

[2] Gael Monfils (FRA)  vs [13] Ivo Karlovic (CRO)

Ivo Karlovic at 37 could be the hottest player on tour if he wins this match.  Back-t0-back titles on two different surfaces is hard enough but to do that at 37 is really something. Therefore, Ivo has a lot on the line here.  I am not trying to overstate Newport or even DC’s importance on tour or to overstate Ivo’s game which is built around one superb stroke. Monfils winning as the second seed would be good for his hardcourt season.  He would be winning matches he is supposed to win.  This is something Monfils has not always done.

Their head-t0-head record is 2-2 with a lot of tiebreak sets.  They have not met since 2011. I don’t think either has an inherent advantage based upon that information.  I think Monfils has the more well rounded game so long as he takes care of his service game.  I think Dr. Ivo has a tactical focus that few people on tour have as he basically hits big serves and attacks the net whenever possible when serving or returning.  If Monfils can track down volleys and hit good passing shots (lob at your own risk), he should be favored. However, Gael has to find a way to avoid any lapses when serving.  I think whomever wins will have to win at least one tiebreak.

My Prediction: Gael Monfils d. Ivo Karlovic 7-6, 5-7, 6-3

Confidence in my prediction: Moderate low – Ivo has momentum

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