WILL EVANS’ daily preview serves up French Open tips for 10th seed Cameron Norrie’s second-round clash with Aussie qualifier Jason Kubler.
20:30 (AEST), Wed 25th May @ Stade de Roland Garros, Paris
History: Played 1: Kubler 1 V Norrie 0
Last meeting: Great Britain F11, 2013 (R16): Kubler d Norrie 6-2 6-1
Final Thoughts: World No.160 Jason Kubler is the only Aussie remaining in the men’s draw after several of his higher-profile compatriots suffered opening-round upset losses.
The 29-year-old carved out a 7-6 7-6 7-6 win over world No.81 Denis Kudla in the first round after emerging through a gruelling week of qualifiers. Kubler hit 10 aces and won 77 percent of his first-serve points.
Tenth seed Cameron Norrie shapes as a far more formidable opponent, however. Britain’s top-ranked men’s player won the Lyon Open last week to continue a steady rise up the ATP ladder and accounted for Manuel Guinard 7-5 6-2 6-0 in the first round.
These players haven’t met at ATP level, but Kubler did carve out a 6-2 6-1 win over Norrie back in 2013 in a Futures tournament.
The 26-year-old Norrie is yet to fulfil his promise on the grand slam stage – his best result at a major is reaching the third round, which he did at last year’s French Open before running into Rafael Nadal.
Kubler, meanwhile, is in the main draw of a slam for just the fifth time. His blistering forehand and strong service game should cause Norrie a few headaches. While those attacking attributes may not be enough to force a massive upset, it would not surprise to see Kubler nab a set.