World number 35 Kei Nishikori will take to court for his second round match against Italy’s world number 74 Stefano Travaglia at the 2020 French Open. This match will be played on Thursday, October 1 and could begin at around 12.00 pm local time (11.00 am BST or 6 am Eastern Time). Get the live streaming options of this Pablo Kei Nishikori v Stefano Travaglia match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Kei Nishikori v Stefano Travaglia Head to Head
This will be the first ever meeting between Nishikori and Travaglia at this level.
Nishikori Scrapes Through Against Evans
Despite being out of the sport for a while and having played just four matches all year, Nishikori had gone into his first round match against the 34th-ranked Dan Evans as a huge favourite.
It was probably to do with his record at the French Open where he has made the quarterfinals on three separate occasions including last year before he lost to the eventual winner, Rafael Nadal. Which is why when when he fell 6-1 down in the first set, the alarm bells must have begun sounding but the Japanese player did well to win the next two sets.
Another drop in Nishikori’s intensity bought Evans some more time, pushing the match into the fifth set but the Japanese player went on to pouch the last set. He notched up an early break and while Evans broke back to make it 3-3, Nishikori broke his opponent in the 10th game of the set to clinch it 6-4 in the fifth.
Nishikori had resumed playing at Kitzbuhel in September and while he lost his opener there, as you would expect given the break he has had had, he has also shown signs of improvement. A second round at Rome was followed by another opening defeat in Hamburg but having gotten past an opponent ranked in close vicinity in the first round here should give some some amount of confidence.
Travaglia Loves His Clay
By making it to the second round at this year’s French Open, the 28-year-old Stefano Travaglia has achieved his best-ever result at Roland-Garros and the joint-best at Grand Slams. And the Italian did that by defeating the favourite Pablo Andujar in straight sets in the first round.
Travaglia has been around for the better part of a decade, and in this much time he has won 23 titles at the Challengers and Futures circuit. All of these have come on clay, to go with a further 10 finals he has lost.
On all other surfaces combined, Travaglia’s reached just one final.
Which is why it is a bit of a surprise he hasn’t really been able to convert that into a greater result at the Grand Slam. There’s always a first time, and having made it to the semifinal of the Protejov Challenger earlier this month and made it to the third round at the Rome Masters with wins over Taylor Fritz and Borna Coric would have given him the fuel he needed.
Nishikori v Travaglia Prediction and Tip
Rather interestingly, it’s Travaglia who starts off as a favourite here at 8/11 as opposed to Nishikori’s 11/10. Nishikori brings oodles of experience to the table and it would be foolhardy to count him out despite his time away from the circuit. We think this will have more than three sets for sure.
Tip: Four sets (8/5) or five sets (5/2) in the match: (bet365)