This will be the first time these two players will play against each other.
This is the first edition of this ATP 250 in Marbella. Until now, it was a Challenger tournament.
In this edition
In the 1st round, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina won in 3 sets against the tough Damir Dzumhur.
As for Ilya Ivashka, he defeated Pedro Martinez that I had imagined more regular and aggressive than that.
We are dealing with two players who are serving very well. That tells me that we could possibly see a tie-break in this match.
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina will have my preference in this match, as he is much more comfortable on this surface.
Ilya Ivashka knows how to hold his serves with an excellent first ball and an ability to use the serve-volley. He also manages to take the game to himself with a good forehand (and this could perhaps do some damage to Davidovich Fokina’s side).
Now, Ilya Ivashka has some weaknesses when the rallies get going and that deserves to be brought to the forefront for this new match. The current world No. 115 is not the most mobile player on the circuit (let alone when playing long rallies on clay). He is quickly overwhelmed, which benefits his opponents in terms of hitting winners (when he isn’t the one making the fault).
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina is a much more mobile man who knows how to attack first with a powerful forehand. I think that this point could hurt Ilya Ivashka a lot. Moreover, the Spanish has the ability to make beautiful and unpredictable bunts that can leave his opponent on the spot.
I would have been even more confident if a tie-break wasn’t hanging over this match.
Prediction: Alejandro Davidovich Fokina wins