Marc Polmans d Sandro Ehrat 7-5 6-3
Polmans has always been a consistent player on whichever surface he has played. The odds were relatively even for this one, but the big difference was Polman's aggression on the second serve, having the professional tour experience to combat the nerves. Ehrat, who is ranked 408 in the world, played his first ATP Tour event in 2021, but was no match for the Aussie.
Vit Kopriva d Johan Nikles 6-2 6-1
Kopriva was just a class above for the Swiss wildcard. The world no 409 gave it his best, but his aggression was no match for the world no 249, who may even see himself go for a good run this tournament. Kopriva converting 5/15 break points, compared to just 0/1 for the Swiss.
Zizou Bergs d Oscar Otte 7-6(3) 6-1
Bergs has been a big favourite of JG throughout qualifiers, and overcame Otte. The German was the favourite, likely due to his massive serve, but in fact statistics say Bergs was the better server on the day. Otte had his chances, only converting 1/9 break points compared to 3/7 for the Belgian.
Feliciano Lopez (8) d Marc-Andrea Huesler 6-4 4-6 6-5 (WALKOVER)
In a battle of the lefties, it was the Swiss 25yo with the break in the first set, but it was Lopez providing the goods. As a 39yo, Lopez cannot afford to be down a set and to have the energy to comeback. Huesler put on the gas in the second set, ensuring the aggression was too much for the Spaniard, finishing the set with an ace. Unfortunately, due to cramping late in the third set, Huesler could not continue.
Mikael Ymer d Enzo Couacaud 4-6 6-3 6-3
The Frenchman started strong, shrugging off any nerves as most underdog challenger play would have, but it was the experience of Ymer coming through strong. Couacoud was winning more of his serve, and created the opportunities to break, but only converting 1/6 compared to 3/4 for the Swede. For many challenger players in this ATP 250 event, many matches will have its momentum shifts, and it is the responsibility of players to withstand the pressure to retain the momentum and convert break points.
Benoit Paire (6) d Jozef Kovalik 6-4 7-6(2)
Paire has been finding a scrap of form recently, having a few wins, including a good one here. Kovalik just gave the Frenchman too much space and time to play. Surprisingly, there was only 1 break in the match, but Kovalik had 8 chances to do so. As usual, Paire finds his way to the highlight reel, but this time for a spectacular drop shot!
Dennis Novak d Kasper Zuk 6-4 6-4
Zuk and Novak looked on level terms starting the first set, but it was Novak finding the cracks in the Polish serve, then dominating on his own serve. Zuk had his chance, only converting 1/3 break points, but it was the Austrian converting 75% (3/4) to finish the match in straight sets.
Hugo Gaston d Juan Manuel Cerundolo 6-4 6-2
Neither player competed off the charts today, but it was Gaston being a bit more consistent than the 19yo. Gaston is only 20, but has a unique playing style that is hard for younger people to be composed and smart enough to play against. Cerundolo is likely to go further in the future, but 19 is still a bit young to be competing on the ATP Tour just quite yet at his level.
Laslo Djere (7) d Thiago Seyboth Wild 6-4 6-3
These two faced only a week ago, with the Serb claiming a straight sets victory. Much to the liking of Djere, this result was much of the same. Djere winning 85% of his first serve, and converting 50% of his break point opportunities.
Federico Delbonis (5) d Leandro Riedi 6-3 6-3
Delbonis produced a quick start against the world no 638. His heavy forehand pushed the Riedi further behind the baseline, and on the defence for most of the match. Delbonis having a relatively easy match, holding every serve and breaking 3 times in 76 minutes.
Tallon Griekspoor d Juan Ignacio Londero 7-5 6-4 7-6(1)
With only 1 break each side for the entire match, it was the Dutch man bringing home the bacon in 2 hours 15minutes. Griekspoor has grown well in 2021, moving up 50 spots from 155 to 105. Griekspoor only winning one more point than Londero, and it was likely due to his brilliant serving, hitting 14 aces to 7.
Arthur Rinderknech d Dominic Stephan Striker 6-4 6-4
In the most anticipated match of the night, these two up n comers were on Centre Court (Roy Emerson Arena) in a fuller crowd than usual for a match of these rankings. The Swede crowd cheered the 18yo, and he started well, but it was clear the Frenchman was winning the power game. Rinderknech serving 10 aces to 1, winning 91% of first serves. Good form leading into the tournament.