World number 13 Roberto Bautista-Agut faces the French challenge of Gilles Simon, ranked 57th in the second round of the 2020 Cologne Open on Wednesday, October 14. The match is likely to start sometime after 12 pm local time (11 am BST). Get the live streaming options of this Roberto Bautista-Agut v Gilles Simon match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Roberto Bautista-Agut v Gilles Simon Head to Head
This is an interesting rivalry which has seen six previous chapters. Somewhat surprisingly, Simon leads 5-1 on head to head, with his only defeat to Bautista-Agut having come in their only meeting on clay. In three other matches on hard court and two on indoor hard court, Simon has dropped just one set including their latest meeting in Pune in 2018.
Bautista-Agut Steady Since Pandemic Break
Bautista-Agut has featured in four tournaments since the return of the sport following the break for the pandemic, and done reasonably well in all four.
In between all this he had had the time to return back home to be with his wife for the birth of their son and then returned to make it to the third round of the French Open. And despite going into the match as a favourite against Pablo Carreno Busta, he went down in four sets to the fellow Spaniard.
The world number 13 has won one of his nine titles on indoor hard court – it came in Sofia in 2016 – and since then has made it five hard court titles to go with it. He resumed playing in September at the Cincinnati Open where he made the semifinal where he all but took out Novak Djokovic before losing in three sets.
A bye in the first round here in Cologne means he will have to look to adjust to the change in surface with a first match against an opponent who has had a wood over him. Things could get interesting as a result.
Simon Shrugs Off Poor Clay Show
Playing in a Challenger and three ATP events on clay since the pandemic break got done, Simon’s only wins came in the qualifying rounds of the Hamburg Open. Other than that, he suffered first round losses in all four tournaments, having earlier also crashed out of the Cincinnati Open qualifiers.
In fact, Simon, who was a losing semifinalist at the Marseille Open before the pandemic break, won his only match since August, at the US Open but lost in straight sets in the second round to Taylor Fritz.
It was finally here in Cologne Simon has finally looked like at home when he carved out a crushing 6-0, 6-3 victory against an overwhelming favourite Marton Fucsovics, showing signs of his former world number six.
Now ranked 57th in the world, Simon faces an opponent who has come leaps and bounds since they last met and despite the Frenchman’s stellar record against him, this might not be an easy one.
Bautista-Agut v Simon Prediction and Tip
While Bautista-Agut has generally found the going tough against Simon, his form over the last two seasons – since they last played – is different from all those years ago and we think this could be an easy one for the Spaniard.
Tip: Bautista-Agut to win: 4/11 (bet365)