Sumit Nagal vs Dominic Thiem: US Open Preview and Prediction
The 124th-ranked Sumit Nagal locks horns against the World number three, Dominic Thiem in the second round of the US Open tonight.
Nagal began his campaign ousting homeboy, Bradley Klahn in four sets. He was in full control of the match and his second serve was impressive as he notched up an 85% winning percentage.
On the other hand. Thiem did not have any troubles as he defeated Jaume Munar 7-6 6-3 before Munar retired hurt.
History is in the making for Nagal after becoming the first Indian to win a grand slam singles match since Somdev Devvarman did it in 2013.
The Austrian has been far from convincing despite showing good form during the exhibition tournaments. An early defeat in the Cincinnati Open was a shocking result for Thiem. The second seed committed 25 unforced errors and could convert just three out of 10 breakpoint opportunities in his match against Munar indicating his rustiness.
"It was not easy to walk inside the court knowing this match is more in your favour. I was definitely nervous and especially playing for my first slam win but I did the things I was supposed to and kept my composure," said Nagal after his win against Klahn.
He would have to keep his emotions in check and depend on his first-serve to get the job done against Thiem.
“I actually saw his full match last year against Roger. He was playing well. I remember he had an amazing forehand, like a really, really good one. So maybe I'll see some of those highlights and some from the latest match", said Thiem revealing his gameplan against Nagal.
Head to Head record
Both Nagal and Thiem are playing each other for the first time on the tour. While Nagal has nothing to lose, this is Thiem's best chance to win a maiden grand slam title after three runner-up finishes. In the absence of legends like Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, the Austrian has a great opportunity at hand.
Nagal would look to challenge Thiem from the baseline with his top-spin heavy forehand. Thiem should reduce his count of unforced errors and use his consistent groundstrokes to unsettle Nagal.
Prediction - Dominic Thiem to win in four sets
Featured image credits: firstsportz.com