John Isner – Jeffrey John Wolf
It’s never easy to predict a match between two Americans playing in their home country. However, I find it hard to believe that John Isner won’t be able to make the effort necessary to get past the first round. In fact, he has never lost at this level of competition in 10 appearances.
Add to that the fact that John Isner is in his hometown. This is simply his favorite tournament. Atlanta is close to his hometown and he has reached the final of this ATP 250 tournament 8 times (for 5 trophies lifted).
The last performance of the American giant was not very sexy (in the semifinals of Los Cabos against Nakashima), but I suspect that he did not do the maximum since he already had the head in Atlanta. His previous two matches against Donskoy and Bolt were much more representative of his level of play.
Jeffrey John Wolf is far from being at an incredible level lately. He has lost 7 of his last 10 matches. It is John Isner who will decide the outcome of this match.
Prediction: John Isner
Jack Sock – Ricardas Berankis
Ricardas Berankis has not played since his retirement in Hamburg on July 12. The fault is a foot injury. We don’t know if he will be 100% for this new match, but we imagine he will be able to play if he shows up on the court.
We could be looking at a tight match here. Jack Sock still hasn’t found his old form (will he ever?), while Ricardas Berankis can be very oppressive.
However, this opponent is totally compatible with Jack Sock’s game. The American can unleash some very offensive forehands that could push the Lithuanian into a corner more than once. Add to that the fact that the rallies are more often committed to the games of Ricardas Berankis, who may have some difficulty winning free points. Sock is far from being a great receiver and this could give him plenty of opportunities to break.
Finally, let’s put forward the fact that Jack Sock will play at home. We know the man and his ability to transcend in his country. Moreover, he knows this ATP 250 in Atlanta very well. He has already played it 6 times (two losses in the first round, two quarter-finals and a semi-final).
Jack Sock’s draw is far from easy. He could meet Isner in the second round and Sinner in the third. On the other hand, this first opponent is largely within his reach. Not to mention that the presence of the spectators should help him manage the few tricky moments.
Prediction: Jack Sock