Montreal R2 previews and predictions: Nadal vs. Coric, Tsonga vs. Querrey

Rafael Nadal will kick off his Montreal campaign when he takes the court for second-round action against Borna Coric on Wednesday. Meanwhile, familiar foes Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Sam Querrey are set for another meeting.

(1) Rafael Nadal vs. Borna Coric

Nadal and Coric will be squaring off for the fourth time in their careers when they clash in round two of the Rogers Cup on Wednesday. The head-to-head series stands at 2-1 in favor of Coric, who pulled off a 6-2, 7-6(4) upset at at the 2014 Swiss Indoors Basel and dominated 6-1, 6-3 at last summer’s Cincinnati Masters. Nadal’s lone victory came via a 6-3, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 decision in the first round of the 2015 U.S. Open.

Nadal’s setbacks at the hands of the 20-year-old Croat can be easily explained. The indoor event in Basel is an unfavorable setting and comes during the Spaniard’s worst time of year, and in Cincinnati he was making a quick turnaround on the heels of a grueling run at the Olympics (fourth place in singles, gold medalist in doubles). Nadal is in fine-form and well-rested this time around, standing at No. 1 in the race to the ATP finals thanks in part to his 10th French Open title. Coric’s 2017 record is a modest 15-16 following his 6-2, 6-4 rout of lucky loser Mikhail Youzhny on Tuesday. Based on current form, there is no reason to think that the world No. 55 will continue his surprising success at Nadal’s expense.

Pick: Nadal in 2

Sam Querrey vs. (8) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

Tsonga and Querrey will be facing each other for the seventh time in their careers when they collide again on Wednesday. The head-to-head series stands at 4-2 in favor of Tsonga, who has won two of their three previous hard-court encounters. But their most memorable meetings have come at Wimbledon; the Frenchman survived 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-7(4), 6-3, 14-12 in 2014 before Querrey recently triumphed 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(5), 1-6, 7-5 earlier this summer.

The 20th-ranked American followed that up with additional five-set wins over Kevin Anderson and Andy Murray, putting him in the semifinals of a Grand Slam for the first time (lost to Marin Cilic in a competitive four-setter). Having lifted the trophy this past week in Los Cabos, Querrey is now 10-1 in his last 11 matches. This marks Tsonga’s second consecutive match against Querrey, because he has not played since Wimbledon and got a first-round bye in Montreal. Rest usually does the oft-injured Tsonga some good, and he is also a former champion of this tournament (2014 in Toronto). Querrey, on the other hand, may be running on fumes and he struggled to get past Vincent Millot 4-6, 7-6(4), 7-5 on Tuesday.

Pick: Tsonga in 2

29 Comments on Montreal R2 previews and predictions: Nadal vs. Coric, Tsonga vs. Querrey

  1. Sam Querrey is hot right now but i think he will lose to Tsonga , fatigue and PAYBACK TIME will cost him(sam) the match.
    He struggled to defeat V. Milliot and the match ended in 3 sets, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is well rested but that might not be a good thing cos he might be rusty.

    I still think Tsonga will win not sure of the sets.

    Rafa nadal vs Borna Coric- this match is an over games i.e over 20.5 games, no one will win in a blowout.
    I see B. Coric taking a set but he might not win, i don’t want to scare some of my friends that love Rafa like RITB 3.0, Alison etc.

    Nadal might win but it won’t be easy, over 20. 5 games or in 3 sets, if he wins in 2 sets then the match will go over.

  2. Coric beat Rafa in Basel when Rafa was managing his appendicitis before his operation and last year Rafa had not recovered from his wrist injury but felt compelled to play in the fall as he had played the Olympics – basically, he wasn’t 100% fit and threw the towel in for the rest of the year after Beijing. Had it not been for the Olympic games, I think he would have just signed off after Wimbledon.

    Youzhny was so laid back in his match against Coric yesterday, he was practically horizontal. That he managed to win 6 games is testament that coric wasn’t on fire either. That is not to say Coric won’t turn up all guns blazing tonight because he is playing Rafa. Rafa will need to shorten the points because Coric likes long rallies. Coric is a poor man’s Djokovic.

    • When R. Nadal defeated B. Coric in the US open(2015), coric had some problems as well.
      When B. Coric defeated Rafa in cincinnati(2016) he was struggling with knee problems both had their problems.

      R. Nadal has not defeated Borna coric in straight sets but Coric has done it twice.
      Rafa should win this match but it won’t be easy, he needs to be careful or he will lose.

      I don’t think Rafa will make it to finals his draw is tough, if he makes it #RESPECT even if he loses in the finals.

  3. Rafa will win in 2, he’s going to win Montreal, Us Open, a couple of other masters 1000’s before the end of the year and the world tour finals meaning 2017 will be a better year for him than 2013 and ending the year as number one

  4. I highly doubt Rafa will win everything this year, but it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that he’ll win another big title this year. People are far too overly confident in Federer if they think he’s winning everything.

    • Congratulations Rafa! Loved seeing him come out with his game face on! Rafa looking sharp out of the gate!

      As the tennis channel commits reminded us, Rafa has to win three matches to become officially the new #1!

  5. Congrats Rafa, well played. Many doubt Rafa on the HCs, but he’s looking sharp here in his first match. I hope he continues to be so sharp all tournament and wins the big prize.

    • Rafa’s tough draw has opened up. Delpo lost to Shapovalov today after beating Isner in his first match. Raonic lost to Mannarino. His path just got easier.

      But I don’t know that it matters, given he w well he played against Coric!

      • I like that Rafa tries to play aggressive tennis, trying to win points with his serve ( 7 aces I think) but he has to be careful about the DFs.

        Delpo didn’t play well in the R2 match, I doubt he would give Rafa much problem if they meet; but it’s the young Canadian who came through. He’s quick and tried to hit hard and served big, but he’s too inexperienced for Rafa; Rafa’s unique strokes need a bit of getting used to esp for his first time opponent.

  6. Delpo didn’t play well against Isner either. Isner lost through his own errors and I’m not complaining, because I hate it when Rafa has to play these giants even though he’s never lost to Isner, leading their h2h 6:0. Delpo has not had enough match play, he’s a bit rusty.

    Shapovalov will fancy his chances, but I agree, luckystar, that he is a bit inexperienced for Rafa.

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