Sixth seed Nikoloz Basilashvili will be up against local wild card Altug Celikbilek in the Round of 16 of the Antalya Open on Saturday, January 9, with the match expected to start at 11.30 am local time (8.30 am BST). Get the live streaming options of this Nikoloz Basilashvili v Altug Celikbilek match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Nikoloz Basilashvili v Altug Celikbilek Head to Head
This will be the first meeting between the 40th-ranked Basilashvili and the 309th-ranked Celikbilek.
Basilashvili Stutters But Ends Winless Drought
Georgia’s Nikoloz Basilashvili finally ended his winless drought as he fought back from a set down to oust Italy’s Andrea Arnaboldi in the first round of the ATP Antalya Open on Thursday.
The sixth seed was in a bit of a spot as the Italian served for the match at 4-5 in the second set, but the Georgian held his nerves and bounced back to take the contest 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 in two hours and two minutes.
This was Basilashvili’s first Tour win since February last year, when he beat Richardas Berankis in the first round of the Dubai Open. Since then he lost 10 singles matches in a row as he ended 2020 with a 4-13 overall record.
A former World No. 16, Basilashvili, who has three ATP titles, will take a lot of confidence from the come-from-behind win over Arnaboldi and will look to keep the momentum going against the unheralded Turk on Saturday.
Celikbilek Sees Off Zuk
Turkish wild card Altug Celikbilek scored a hard-fought first-round victory over Poland’s Kacper Zuk to win his first match on the ATP Tour since June 2019.
The World No. 309 saved four set points in the first set to oust the 262nd-ranked Pole 7-6 (9-7), 7-5 in an hour and 49 minutes. He fell behind 2-5 in the first set, but dug deep to force the tiebreak and then held on to see off the set.
The 24-year-old right-hander, who improved to 6-6 overall in his career on Thursday, had last played a main draw match on the ATP circuit in June 2019. It had come in Antalya itself, on grass but what this opening win showed was he coul pose a tricky challenge for Basilashvili on Saturday.
De Minaur v Jaziri Prediction and Tip
Despite his last year’s form, Basilashvili is expected to win this encounter in straight sets. He seems to have found his rhythm in the later stages against Arnaboldi and should carry that momentum against the Turk.
Tip: Basilashvili to win: 4/9 (bet365)