German tennis player, Jan-Lennard Struff has made it into the second round of the 2019 ATP Madrid Masters in Spain. At this stage of the tournament, Struff will play against Marin Cilic from Croatia.
Jan-Lennard Struff was very impressive in the opening round as he defeated Nick Kyrgios in straight sets. It was a match where both players served well and Struff showed his ability by hitting 13 aces and winning 85% of his service points. While the serve was impressive, Jan-Lennard Struff struggled to receive as the German only won 2 break points. The returning will be very concerning for Struff failed since winning receiving points is an essential trait for success on clay. This is expected to be a much tougher match for Jan-Lennard Struff as he is playing against
On the other side of the coin, Marin Cilic enters this match having won his previous match in 3 sets. It was a well-paced win for Cilic as he won 80% of his service games and 8 return games. Similar to Struff, Marin Cilic is also better suited to hard courts but the Croatian has been able to adapt well over the years. Cilic has won titles on clay such as the ATP Istanbul Open which shows that the Croatian has the ability to play well at a tournament such as the Madrid Masters. Cilic is highly seeded at this tournament and following a solid win in the opening round, the Croatian will enter this match with some confidence.
Marin Cilic and Jan-Lennard Struff have played each other twice in the past. Cilic and Struff have both won on one occasion.
Taking everything into consideration, I am going to pick Marin Cilic to win this match. Jan-Lennard Struff had a good win in the opening round but the German is not well suited to clay. Struff is a very powerful server and baseline player but with the slow nature of clay, I see Cilic neutralizing the strength of the German player. Cilic is a decent clay court player and I see him winning this match and qualifying for the third round.