Haas vs Tomic 20.06.17
Gerry Weber Open, Halle, Germany, Clay Courts, Mens ATP Tour
Today sees us look at another intriguing First Round encounter from the Gerry Weber Open, in Halle, Germany, between the world number 252, and home-crowd favourite, Tommy Haas and the Aussie world number 61, Bernard Tomic.
These two have met four times previously, with Tomic leading the head to head 3-1. The Aussie also won their last meeting on grass, in Stuttgart back in 2015. Haas only ‘victory’ over Tomic came in this tournament back in 2012, however neither player hit a ball, as Tomic withdrew through injury before the match started. Both players played in Stuttgart last week, Haas had a good run to the Quarter Finals, eventually succumbing to Mischa Zverev, but beating Roger Federer on the way, whilst Tomic lost in the Second Round in straight sets to Thomas Berdych.
Let’s take a look at both player’s grass court mean stats from last week…
Haas’ recent grass court mean serving stats look like this, he’s won 65% of his service points and held serve 85% of the time.
Tomic’s recent grass court mean serving stats look like this, he’s won 62% of his service points and held serve 75% of the time.
Haas has a good serve on the grass, he will hit it hard and flat, and he should win some free points off it in this match. Tomic also has a decent serve on the grass, however his second delivery can be exploited if he decides to just roll it in, something he’s prone to doing.
Haas’ recent grass court mean returning stats look like this, he’s won 29% of his return points, 44% of his break points and opponents have held 90% of the time against him.
Tomic’s recent grass court returning stats look like this, he’s won 34% of his return points, 38% of his break points and opponents have held 82% of the time against him.
Haas’ has struggled to return serve consistently on the grass so far, however he has played Federer and Zverev, so it hasn’t been an easy task, he should find it significantly easier against Tomic. The Aussie does return serve well on the grass, he blocks the ball back into play consistently off both sides, so look out for this today.
Haas will look to be the more aggressive off the ground, especially off his forehand side. He will tend to stay on the baseline, but will come to the net if the opportunity arises. Tomic will push the ball around the court with little to no pace on it, he will also play tricky slice backhands and drop shots, all designed to upset Haas rhythm. He will also remain predominantly at the back of the court, and will be happy to defend and then counter punch when the opportunity arises.
I think today may well be the day that Haas actually defeats Tomic. Spurred on by the home crowd in his last ever appearance at Halle, I think the German’s aggressive groundstrokes can pierce Tomic’s stout defence, and if serving consistently i think he stands a really great chance of winning. We all know how mentally fragile Tomic can be, however if he’s up for it then he stands a chance, especially if returning well. This could well go three sets, but I can’t help thinking Tomic needs to win the first for that to be the case.