Nick Kyrgios had probably his best tournament to date during his career in Marseille last week however as ever there isn’t much time to celebrate on the tour as the Australian is set to take a 10 hour journey to Dubai where Martin Klizan is waiting for him in round one.
If you want to be at the very top of the game then you have to do this week in week out on the tour travelling hundreds and thousands of miles and this is now a big test for Nick to see if he can keep the momentum going from Marseille and bring it to Dubai.
Martin Klizan is a player in form this year and comes into Dubai with a win/loss record of 8/4 this year and recently claimed his 4th career title and 100th win on the tour and is a couple of places off his career high ranking of 24. At 6’3’’ he does have a big serve and in 12 matches this year has hit 62 aces which is an average of 5.1 aces a match which isn’t as much as you’d expect and it doesn’t really balance out well for the Slovakian who as well as hitting 62 aces this year has also hit 62 double faults but has saved 73% of the 113 break points he’s faced which is pretty good but first serve return points won is low at 30% and with Nick’s explosive serving performance last week especially in the final hitting 17 aces against Marin Cilic this could be an important factor to victory for Nick.
Klizan can be a tricky player to play against. He has good weapons and in my opinion is better off the two handed backhand which pushes opponents back behind the baseline due to the depth he gets but also watch out for a slice forehand which we have seen a few times to catch players out!
Recovery for Nick will be key, he didn’t drop a set last week in Marseille however I think this week in Dubai will be much tougher however I’d expect him to get through this match against Klizan in straight sets.