The first round of the 2019 Mexican Open will feature the German No. 1 Alexander Zverev against the young Australian Alexei Popyrin. The match will be played on Tuesday, February 26, after 6:00 pm local time (12:00 am BST).
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Alexander Zverev v Alexei Popyrin Head to Head
Zverev and Popyrin have met only once at the highest level of tennis. The match took place in Basel in 2018 and the German won that one with 6-4, 6-4.
Zverev Seeking to Gain Some Momentum
Given that the Mexican Open will soon be followed by the Indian Wells and Miami Masters, Zverev will be eager to perform well here and head to the States with some momentum. So far this year, the World No. 3 hasn’t been that impressive but again, he has done enough to stay in the top five.
In the Australian Open – his only tour event of the season – he reached as far as the fourth round where he lost to Milos Raonic. After that, he played in the Davis Cup representing his side against Hungary and easily won both of his singles fixtures.
He was also supposed to play in the Rotterdam Open, but an ankle injury forced him out of the tournament. It is now to be seen if he has fully recovered and this week in Mexico will tell us just that.
Zverev is considered to be one of the top players who can upset the top order on the ATP Tour. He has already done so to a certain extent although, he is yet to impose his authority completely. Last year, he won the ATP Finals after defeating Novak Djokovic in the final. He also won the ATP Washington, along with a couple of other titles.
Popyrin’s Busy Start to the Season
Over the course of the last couple of weeks, the 19-year-old Aussie has certainly kept himself busy. He played in all the major events in the Australian Open series and had the best run in Melbourne, where he reached the third round.
It is also worth noting that on his way there, he moved past Dominic Thiem.
Just like Zverev, Popyrin too was involved in the Davis Cup action where he won his fixture against Nerman Fatic in straight sets. He then followed this with a couple of early defeats in New York and Delray Beach.
In Acapulco, he started as a qualifier and got quite lucky, in fact. Both of his opponents – Bernard Tomic and Roberto Ortega Olmedo, retired from the match giving Popyrin an easy walkover.
Zverev v Popyrin Predictions & Tips
Betway are offering 1/6 for Zverev to win this one. Chances are, he will prevail here given his experience and recent form. Popyrin is still young and he lacks the momentum needed for the ATP circuit. He spent most of his previous season the Challenger circuit with very little exposure to this level of tennis.
You can watch & bet on Alexander Zverev v Alexei Popyrin on Tuesday, February 26 here .