World No. 70 Jaume Munar of Spain will meet compatriot and World No. 116 Carlos Taberner in the first round of the 2021 Indian Wells Open on Thursday, October 7. Get the live streaming options of this Jaume Munar v Carlos Taberner match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Jaume Munar v Carlos Taberner Head to Head
It will be a first tour-level meeting between the two 24-year-olds. They are 3-3 from their Futures and Challenger level meetings. Interestingly this will be the first time that they will be meeting on a surface other than clay. They are 1-1 from their two meetings in Antalya this year.
Munar is 1-9 from Last 10 Main Draw Matches
Barring a couple of decent clay court results, Munar has found the going tough this season and a 12-18 season record, which includes a 1-4 record on hard courts, is a reflection of just that.
A clay court specialist, Munar reached his first tour-level final in Marbella this year, finishing runner-up to Pablo Carreno Busta. He was also a semifinalist in Parma and a quarterfinalist in Buenos Aires.
However, since the French Open there has been a constant decline in his form, a result of a change of surface. Munar has won just one of his last 10 main draw matches with that victory coming over Jiri Vesely in the first round in Nur Sultan last month.
John Millman sent Munar packing in the second round of the Astana Open and Marcos Giron beat him in Sofia last week, but interestingly both of those matches were very close ones with Munar taking his opponents to the third set before going down fighting.
The Spaniard also won a set against Aslan Karatsev during his first round exit from the U.S. Open and lost in three to Japan’s Yosuke Watanuki in the first round in Winston Salem.
So Munar has been a tough competitor on hard courts but just hasn’t been able to close out matches. He will be looking to start with a win at Indian Wells, where he lost in the first round in his only previous appearance in 2019.
Taberner Was a Quarterfinalist in Nur Sultan
Facing Munar will be Carlos Taberner, who brings a 5-7 season record to Indian Wells. The 116th-ranked player is in a touch better form than his first-round opponent as he was in the quarterfinals of the Astana Open last month.
Taberner defeated Ricardas Berankis and Egor Gerasimov in the first two rounds but couldn’t find a way past Alexander Bubik in the last eight stage.
Another player who has a preference for clay over other surfaces, Taberner has spent more time at the Challenger level tournaments this season, winning two titles, one of them (in Antalya) by beating Munar in the final. His other title also came on clay in Aix-en-Provence and he also made it to two other semifinals this season.
Taberner, who will make his debut in the Masters 1000 tournament on Thursday, has a tour-level career record of 3-3 on hard courts and he will be looking to improve on that.
Munar v Taberner Prediction and Tip
While Munar is the higher-ranked payer and has more experience at this level, form favours Taberner. Expect a good contest with Taberner advancing to the next round.