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What: Next Gen ATP Finals
When: Wednesday, November 6th at 8:00 AM EST.
Where: PalaLido Allianz Cloud in Milan, Italy
Head to Head Record: 0-0
Casper Ruud lost the opening match of the 2019 ATP Next Gen Finals.
Alejandro Davidovich Fokina played right after him, and also lost his match.
These results have now set a high-stakes matchup between the pair.
The winner will have some breathing room heading into the final round.
The loser, on the other hand, will be on the brink of an early elimination.
Meanwhile, the second match of the day between Alex de Minaur and Miomir Kecmanovic will paint a clear picture of what the group looks like.
No matter which way you look at it, this match is a do-or-die scenario for both players.
The two have never met before at the ATP level.
2019 Record: 22-18, 0 titles
Ruud entered the tournament as the fourth-highest ranked player among the next-gen stars.
He was no match for Miomir Kecmanovic and lost to the Serb without taking a single set.
Ruud did force a tie-break twice, which helped his game win-loss record.
However, given the fact that his next opponent enters the match with slightly better numbers, Ruud needs to win by a good margin.
2019 Record: 3-8, 0 titles
It was a bit of an uphill climb for Davidovich Fokina from the start.
The young Spaniard went up against title favorite Alex de Minaur and was considered a longshot to win.
Davidovich Fokina did have the advantage of the head to head, winning their only previous meeting.
But de Minaur showed why he is the man to beat and won their second meeting 3-1.
Crucially, Davidovich Fokina managed to take one set away from his opponent.
This could make the difference if it comes down to a two-way or three-way tie for second place.
Ruud and Davidovich Fokina have never met before at the ATP level.
The Norwegian is better-known as a clay specialist, while Fokina has done well on the hard surface.
Ruud had a bit of a disappointing showing against Kecmanovic in the opening round.
Davidovich Fokina, on the other hand, put up a fight against title favorite de Minaur for two sets.
While he wasn’t able to keep up and only won a combined two games in the last two sets, the Spaniard’s performance looked much more promising.
Fokina also has a good head to head record against other players in this year’s Next Gen Finals.
At first glance, his lack of experience at the ATP Tour level could make Ruud the favorite.
But Davidovich Fokina’s showing during day 1 looked much more convincing.
Davidovich Fokina 3-1, over 23.5 games.
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