Sock vs Mannarino (Approx 04:00am AEST)
I am a little worried here for Jack Sock, backing up off match with Pablo Cuevas to now face a player with the style of Adrian Mannarino.
I am also a little worried at 1) how long it took him to win and 2) the fact it took him 5 sets to defeat Pablo Cuevas in 2020 on hardcourt. Sock was on the ropes a number of times, and was 2 points from defeat with Cuevas serving at *5-4 30/0 in the fifth set. Alas, the American found a way, winning 3-6 6-4 6-2 4-6 7-6 in 3hr18min. It is a huge result for his ranking, as he continues to make his way back from the tennis wilderness.
Mannarino on the other hand was able to put together a very nice performance in the conditions against Lorenzo Sonego. The Frenchman waivered slightly in set 3, but was good enough to progress 6-1 6-4 2-6 6-3. His style of play is going to be very tricky for Jack Sock to handle, for a couple of reasons.
The first reason is the heavy legs of Sock coming off a long, gruelling affair. With Mannarino’s groundstrokes sitting on the flatter side, Sock is going to need to generate a LOT of spin consistently for rally balls, let alone shots he is trying to finish the point with. If he is a little weary in the legs, this could lead to more frequent low-percentage shots from Sock.
The second is the way Mannarino can take a ball into his forehand wing, flatten it out and hit it down the line. This is a great treat to have as a left-handed against Sock, who will look to hit his inside-out forehand regularly during this match. It is an areas I think Mannarino can exploit, so I will be interested to see what unfolds.
At a risk of keeping things too simple and straightforward, Mannarino -3.5 games looks to be the play here, and I am happy to play it for 1.5 units.
1.5 units Mannarino -3.5 games vs Sock at $1.89 at Topsport.
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