David Goffin and Tomas Berdych meet Thursday in the round of 16 at the Rome Masters.
David Goffin is coming off a straight sets victory over Jack Sock and has dropped one set this tournament. Goffin has been playing some consistent tennis as of late with nine victories in his last 13 matches and reached the semifinals of the Miami Masters. Goffin’s current ranking of 13th is as high as it’s been in his career and his third ever win over a top-10 player would certainly help improve that number even more. Goffin is certainly a guy to keep an eye on heading into the French Open, as the 25-year-old can make some noise. Goffin reached the quarterfinals of the Rome Masters last season, his only other appearance in this tournament.
Tomas Berdych is coming off a straight sets win over Albert Ramos-Vinolas and now plays his second match of the tournament. Berdych is still trying to find his form after splitting his last six matches and being hit or miss for pretty much the entire 2016 season. The good news for Berdych is that a lot of his recent losses have come against highly ranked players besides the upset to Damir Dzumhur in the Monte Carlo Masters. Berdych just needs to focus on his serve and limit the silly mistakes, and he should be just fine in this tournament. Berdych looks to reach the quarterfinals of the Rome Masters for the fifth time in his career.
These two have played twice, and Berdych has won both meetings in straight sets. The most recent match was in this year's Marseille Open, a contest that was decided in 19 games. This will be the first time Goffin and Berdych meet on clay court.
I want to pick Goffin for the upset, but Berdych just dominated him not that long ago and has had great success overall in this tournament. I have to side with Berdych for the victory.