World No. 58 Adrian Mannarino will square off against Russian wild card Roman Safiullin in the first round of the 2021 ATP Kremlin Cup on Monday, October 18. Get the live streaming options of this Adrian Mannarino v Roman Safiullin match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Adrian Mannarino v Roman Safiullin Head to Head
58th-ranked Mannarino has never faced off against Roman Safiullin before this.
Mannarino, Twice Runner-up In Moscow
In four previous visits to Russia’s capital, Adrian Mannarino has reached the final of the Kremlin Cup on two occasions (2018 & 2019) and was a semifinalist in 2017. It is safe to say the French veteran produces his best tennis on these parts despite failing to cross the finish line.
That 2019 defeat to Andrey Rublev would have stung a little considering he did not drop a set en route to the championship match. Now, Mannarino will have another bite of the cherry, returning to Moscow looking to atone his previous mishaps.
Mannarino is in poor form though, having won once in his previous six matches, and is currently on a three-match losing streak. Last week he was comprehensively beaten by Andy Murray at Indian Wells, taking just five games.
Since losing via retirement to Roger Federer at Wimbledon, the 33-year-old’s momentum has hit a snag. Can he turn it around against Safiullin on Monday?
Can Safiullin Impress on Home Soil?
Making his second main draw debut at the Kremlin Cup, Roman Safiullin will be keen to repay the tournament organizers for his wild card entrant. Last time out it didn’t turn too well for the Russian who was beaten in the 2017 edition by Yuki Bhambri in straight sets.
Safiullin, a junior Australian Open champion, has had a slow transition on the pro tour. Since that triumph in Melbourne in 2015, he managed to pick up his maiden ATP Challenger title last season in Cherbourg.
This year, he is yet to add to his trophy collection but managed to qualify at two Grand Slam tournaments (Australian Open and French Open), and claimed a major scalp at the Rennes Challenger when he defeated former World No. 1 Andy Murray.
Safiullin is 2-3 at tour-level this season, and 9-14 at the Challenger level clearly illustrating he has regressed a little bit from last season.
Mannarino v Safiullin Prediction and Tip
Since his unfortunate slip at Wimbledon, Mannarino has just not been the same player that looked good for his money to upset Roger Federer. He comes into this match as a slight underdog, and we reckon this might go the distance.