Roberto Bautista Agut vs Nikoloz Basilashvili: Preview | H2H | Prediction: Doha Open 2021

The fifth seed Roberto Bautista Agut takes on Nikoloz Basilashvili in the finals of the ATP 250 Doha Open. 

Agut proved to be too good for the in-form Andrey Rublev overpowering him 6-3 6-3 in the semifinals. Agut clinched an impressive 83% of points on his second serve and also saved 4 out of 5 breakpoints. Though Rublev smashed 8 aces, he had a poor day with his second serve winning a minuscule 7% of points on it. 

Rublev had reached the last four without playing a single singles match after getting two walkovers in a row against Richard Gasquet and Marton Fucsovics in the pre-quarterfinals and quarterfinals. The Russian compensated for that lack of game-time by playing doubles alongside compatriot Aslan Karatsev making it to the finals. 

On the other hand, Basilashvili continued his dream run beating the American Taylor Fritz 7-6 (3) 6-1 in the semis. The Georgian fired 5 aces and claimed 80% of points on his first serve. 

Head to Head Record

Agut leads the head to head record 3-1 against Basilashvili. 

Key Insights

  • Playing his 18th ATP singles final, Agut will aim to win his 10th ATP title.
  • Basilashvili will go for his 4th ATP singles trophy.
  • Both Agut and Basilashvili are right-handers with two-handed backhands.
  • Agut is featuring in his second ATP final of 2021 after losing the finals of the Montpelier Open in three sets to David Goffin in February this year.
  • Agut won the Doha Open 2019 defeating Tomas Berdych in three sets.
  • Both Agut and Basilashvili did not play the Doha Open in 2020 as they were representing their respective nations in the ATP Cup.
  • If Agut wins the final, it will be his second Qatar Open title.
  • Basilashvili's best performance in the Doha Open was in 2019 when he lost in three sets in the quarterfinals to the top seed Novak Djokovic.
  • Agut is on a 9-match winning streak in the Doha Open.

Comparison of vital statistics of Agut and Basilashvili in the Doha Open

Player NameRoberto Bautista AgutNikoloz Basilashvili
Double Faults010
Points Won on First Serve73%79.75%
Points Won on Second Serve 70%54%
Breakpoint Conversion Rate37.50%43.90%
Sets lost22
Win-Loss Record in Tiebreaks1-01-0

Game Analysis

Beating the defending champion, Rublev in straight sets would have given Agut a lot of confidence ahead of the titular clash against Basilashvili. 

The Spaniard is a steady counterpuncher and can battle both big-server and hard-hitters with ease. He can put his opponents on the backfoot with a strong return of serve. His cross-court backhand hit with a lot of speed and control is one of the deadliest on the ATP Tour. He can wear down any player with his relentlessness in the long rallies. 

Basilashvili is on a roll having stunned Roger Federer in three sets after saving a match point in the quarterfinals. He proved that upset was no fluke overcoming Fritz in straight sets. The Georgian can unsettle opponents with his deep groundstrokes. Basilashvili has also impressed with his clutch tennis during the crucial moments by swinging the momentum his way. 

"I am very happy, as I have said, this court and this tournament is one of my favourites, it feels very special to play on this court, I have played one of the best matches of my career here in Qatar, and hopefully tomorrow it's one more, I feel very happy, and I hope to play a good final tomorrow," said Agut full of confidence ahead of the big final. 

Roberto Bautista Agut vs Nikoloz Basilashvili: Prediction

The conditions in the Middle East have suited both Agut and Basilashvili perfectly. Agut has proven his weight against top 10 players having beaten both Dominic Thiem and Rublev in a row in the quarters and semis respectively. 

Basilashvili has brought his strong fighting qualities to the forefront having defeated John Millman and Federer after dropping the first set. Agut's prior experience of being a former champion in Doha gives him a slight edge in the finals. Basilashvili has nothing to lose and will give his all for the title. 

Prediction - Roberto Bautista Agut to win in three sets

Featured Image Credits - Reuters

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