Karen Khachanov vs Kei Nishikori
June 2, 2021 7:15 am EDT
23rd Seeded Russian Karen Khachanov will face unseeded Kei Nishikori of Japan in the Second Round of the 2021 French Open. The match is scheduled to be played on Wednesday June 2nd, 2021 at approximately 7:15am EST.
This is set to be a very intriguing matchup between two former top 10 players. While both have struggled with form and fitness over the past few seasons, they are still very dangerous and experienced players, and are sure to put on a show. Who will win and advance to the Third Round here at Roland Garros?
Karen Khachanov is ranked number 25 in the world, and is the 23rd seed here at the French Open. The Russian was formerly ranked as high as #8 in the world, but has seen his form dramatically fall off over the past few seasons. He has been in terrible form so far during this clay court season, losing in either the First or Second Rounds of all the tournaments that he has played. Despite these struggles, he was outstanding in his win over Jiri Vesely in the First Round, who is a strong opponent. Khachanov dominated from the baseline with some powerful winners, and will be hoping for more of the same against his next opponent, the highly experienced Kei Nishikori.
Kei Nishikori is currently ranked #49 in the world, and is one of the most experienced and successful players on the ATP Tour today. Like his opponent Karen Khachanov, he has seen his ranking slide over the past few years and is now working his way back up. He surprisingly was pushed the distance in his First Round win over unheralded Allesandro Giannesi, and will consider himself lucky to have escaped there. If fatigue is not an issue for him, he will be confident in his chances here against the 23rd seed Khachanov as his counterpunching game style will counter his opponent’s huge game well.
I expect this to be a very close match, and one that can go either way. This will be their sixth meeting, with Kei Nishikori winning three of the previous matches, and I think that trend will continue. He is extremely solid from the baseline and is a great mover. Khachanov is likely to make a lot of errors against an opponent like Nishikori, and I expect the Japanese star to win a tight match here, advancing to the Third Round here at the French Open.