1. Andy Murray v Bernard Tomic
Miami in general but particularly the mens tournament, is completely uninspiring for me at the moment, not helped by an overwhelming lack of TV coverage from what is apparently one of the biggest tournaments of the year. The one second round mens match that has offers potential will see Andy Murray take on Bernard Tomic. The wild Aussie did not have an easy first match up against Marc Gicquel as he wrestled past the Frenchman in two very tight sets, 7-5 7-6(3). Tomic’s year has stabilised somewhat since winning the title in Sydney and making a respectable third round at the Australian Open. His form though has been much more consistent compared to last year and he nearly netted a big top 10 win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in Marseille, letting slip a few match points.
Murray will play his first match since losing in the quarter-finals of Indian Wells to Juan Martin del Potro. He never hit top form, but it wasn’t much of a surprise as he had taken a lengthy break from the tour. I think he will do much better in Miami although he has a significantly tougher draw compared to last week. Murray has beaten Tomic before, in straight sets, but I anticipate a much closer match this time round. Tomic seems to have his head screwed on these days and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him nick a set.
Prediction – Murray to beat Tomic in 2 sets (1 tiebreak, 1 easy)
Best of the rest:
Tomas Berdych and Richard Gasquet should cruise past Daniel Gimeno-Traver and Olivier Rochus respectively. The other top eight seed, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga should also come through in straight sets against Victor Troicki. If you are looking for upsets, Jarkko Nieminen, who had a very impressive comeback win over David Nalbandian yesterday, should comfortably take out Martin Klizan too. A bit more high risk, but I think Ivan Dodig will beat John Isner too.
2nd mens predictions:
Gasquet to beat Rochus in 2 sets
Youzhny to beat Lu in 3 sets
Kohlschreiber to beat Goffin in 2 sets
Almagro to beat Pella in 2 sets
Raonic to beat Rufin in 2 sets
Querrey to beat Kubot in 2 tight sets
Verdasco to beat Falla in 3 sets
Berdych to beat Gimeno-Traver in 2 sets
Tsonga to beat Troicki in 2 tight sets
Nieminen to beat Klizan in 2 sets
Dodig to beat Isner in 3 sets
Cilic to beat Giraldo in 2 sets
Seppi to beat Bedene in 2 sets
Janowicz to beat Bellucci in 3 sets
Dimitrov to beat Bolelli in 2 sets