World number 37 Nikoloz Basilashvili will take on Slovakia’s qualifier Jozef Kovalik in the second round of the 2021 Sardegna Open on Wednesday, April 7. Get the live streaming options of this Nikoloz Basilashvili v Jozef Kovalik match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
Looking to watch 2021 Sardegna Open live streaming online?
- For tennis fans in the UK, Europe, Australia & elsewhere go to bet365 > Tennis > Live Streaming here* to watch & bet on the ATP & WTA tennis live.
- Get all the other Sardegna Open 2021 live streaming options here
*Advertisement. Geo-restrictions apply & pre-funded account needed
Nikoloz Basilashvili v Jozef Kovalik Head to Head
While these two have never played each other at the highest level, they did face off on the Challenger circuit in 2016 where Basilashvili got the better of Kovalik in three sets to make it to the final of that competition. Incidentally that competition was also played on clay.
- All the Latest Sardegna Open Predictions Here
- Best Tennis Coaching Websites
Basilashvili Hoping to Shrug Off 2020 Clay Record
To be honest, it wasn’t about clay alone. Basilashvili struggled to get going last season, and combining all tournaments together, including the exhibition ones, Basilashvili managed to register just four wins in the entire season, with 16 defeats to go with it.
Which is why his 0-4 record on clay which included four, first round losses at the Kitzbuhel Open, Italian Masters, Hamburg Open and the French Open were a part of a bigger form issue he was facing, not just related to clay alone.
And one can say that with some sort of conviction because just the year prior to that, Basilashvili had first helped himself to a semifinal at the Lyon Open on clay and then gone on to win the Hamburg Open title as well.
The Georgian number one did not have the best of starts to this season either, losing five of his first seven matches but the turnaround seemed to have come at the ATP Doha where he went on to win the title with victories over Roger Federer, Taylor Fritz and Felix Auger-Aliassime.
It was an event where everything just clicked for him. He would hope he can find that kind of a rhythm yet again.
Kovalik Overturns Set Deficit
Featuring against fellow qualifier Sumit Nagal, Kovalik looked like he was headed towards exit when he fell a set behind despite having come back from a break down at one stage.
The retaliation from the Slovak came in the second set when Kovalik went on a breaking spree, winning five games in a row in the set and overall six in succession to wrap up the equaliser.
In the third, Kovalik got another early break and had a couple of match-points on Nagal’s serve in the eighth game. Having missed those, he then needed to save three break-points on his own serve before completing the victory off the fourth match-point he got.
Kovalik will now look to emulate his performance at the Cordoba Open earlier this year where he was a quarterfinalist.
Basilashvili v Kovalik Prediction and Tip
Interestingly, both Basilashvili and Kovalik start off 10/11 to win this and we have to go with the Georgian given his record on clay isn’t too bad. Add his recent form and we are looking at a solid combination.
Tip: Basilashvili to win: 10/11 (bet365)