Miomir Kecmanovic vs. Mikhail Kukushkin - 2020 St. Petersburg Open First Round
Tuesday October 13th, 2020
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Miomir Kecmanovic of Serbia faces Kazakh Mikhail Kukushkin in a First Round encounter at the St. Petersburg Open in Russia. The match will be played on Tuesday October 13th and will be a classic youth vs experience encounter. Kukushkin leads the head to head by 1 match to 0.
World number 41 has been having a good year, winning his maiden ATP title in Kitzbuhel. However, immediately after that title run he surprisingly lost in the First Round of Rome and the French Open. He is an extremely talented youngster and big things are expected, however he is very inconsistent at this stage of his career. He has actually had some decent indoor results before and will be backing himself to get back to winning ways here. He is an extremely consistent player and his groundstrokes are big weapons. He will be looking to get off to a good start and to overpower his opponent.
Mikhail Kukushkin has also not had a great year. His 2020 record is 7-10 but one of those wins was an impressive win over Cristian Garin at the US Open, showing that he is capable of great tennis at times. He had good indoor results last year, reaching the final at the Marseille Open with wins over Shapovalov and Rublev, so he is still dangerous towards the end of his career, especially on this surface. He also reached the Quarterfinals here last year so he will be confident in his chances here.
I am going to pick Mikhail Kukushkin to win this match. They are both struggling with form at the moment and while I think Kecmanovic is the better player the experience of Kukushkin cannot be discounted. He has had better indoor results through his career so I expect him to draw from his experience in the crucial moments and win a very close encounter. Mikhail Kukushkin to win.