World number 21 Milos Raonic will be up against 52nd-ranked Alexander Bublik in the second round of the 2020 St. Petersburg Open. The match is scheduled for Thursday, October 15 with an exact time yet to be announced. Get the live streaming options of this Khachanov v Karatsev match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Milos Raonic v Alexander Bublik Head to Head
There have been no previous matches between Raonic and Bublik.
Raonic Overcomes Slow Start in Opener
The Canadian was expected to come through in his opening round match against JJ Wolf without too many hangups but he was tested in the first set of that encounter. Unable to find a way to break through the Wolf serve, Raonic was pushed into a tie-breaker which could have gone either way too.
Once he had won that though, there was no looking back for Raonic who then broke Wolf twice in the second set to complete an easy win.
Raonic had earlier opted not to play at the French Open because of the risks associated with the pandemic, after the organisers had opted to open the stadium to fans. That was after his second round loss at the US Open where he would have expected to do a lot better than that following his Cincinnati Masters final showing.
What’s interesting to note is Raonic hasn’t played too much indoors since 2015 – 22 matches between 2016 and 2019 of which he had won only 10 – and that’s despite the Canadian having won the St. Petersburg Open title back in 2015.
Bublik Overturns First Set Deficit
Kazakhstan’s Bublik wasn’t looking in the best space in his first round match here, falling behind a set against Mackenzie McDonald and unable to make a breakthrough in the second. At the same time, Bublik hung in there, saved a break-point and pushed the set into a tie-breaker which he won.
In the third yet again, things looked to be headed towards a deadlock when neither player was able to get the better of the other’s serve in the first eight games. In the ninth, however, Bublik got a chance to sneak past McDonald, which he did before wrapping up the match off his second match-point.
This is Bublik’s first tournament on a non-clay surface since his back to back opening defeats at the Cincinnati Open and the US Open. For him to have switched over from clay and come out a winner would give be a shot in his arm, and even more so given he was a semifinalist in the last tournament he played indoors.
That had come in Marseille where he beat Benoit Paire and Denis Shapovalov before losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Raonic v Bublik Prediction and Tip
Raonic is 4/11 to win this but Bublik cannot be discounted here given his ability to scrap on a surface he has done well earlier this year. Expecting him to push Raonic.
Tip: Bublik to win a set – Yesy: 4/5 (bet365)