Match Preview Donskoy vs Ferrer 24.03 Miami Open 2018

Miami, USA, Hard Courts, ATP

Latest posts by Tennis Purist (see all)

Morning All,

Well it was clear to see that Gasquet wasn’t 100% fit yesterday, despite taking a 4-0 lead in the first set. The traders amongst you should have profited nicely as Chardy started storming back, and at 4-4 in the first set, there was only ever going to be one winner, and it was only ever going to be in straight sets. Those that ‘risked’ backing Gasquet from the off should also have been nicely green after his fast start.

Today sees us preview another Miami Open match, this time between Russian world number 88, Evgeny Donskoy and the veteran Spaniard, world number 35, David Ferrer.

Previous Meetings

These two have met twice before, and the head to head is tied at one a piece. Ferrer won on the clay at Roland Garros in 2016 and Donskoy avenged that defeat by winning on the hard courts at the Rio Olympics later on that year.

Donskoy is a hard court ‘specialist’, and schedules a majority of his season to play on this surface. So far in 2018 he has a 10-8 win/loss record, but has won 6 of his last 9 matches. He will be very at home on this surface and had a convincing straight sets victory over Aljaz Bedene in Round 1.

Ferrer is far less comfortable on hard courts, far preferring the slower European clay courts. He has a 5-6 win/loss record on the hard courts this season, although he has had notable wins against Chung and Rublev, so he’s not to be taken lightly.

Donskoy’s Recent Hard Court Mean Serving Stats

Won 63% of his service points

Held serve 79% of the time

Donskoy has a solid serve and his stats are just above the average recent hard court mean for the Tour. He will look to use the kicker on his second serve out to Ferrer’s backhand, and with Ferrer only being 5ft 9″ tall this may be a telling stroke today, and should see the Russian get plenty of short returns.

Ferrer’s Recent Hard Court Mean Serving Stats

Won 67% of his service points

Held serve 85% of the time

I was very surprised to see these serving stats from Ferrer, especially given that he’s played Del Potro twice and Rublev. Typically speaking, the Ferrer serve is one of his weaker strokes, and he’ll need to up his first serve % from above the recent 57% mark in order to prevent himself being put under pressure during his service games.

Donskoy’s Recent Hard Court Mean Returning Stats

Won 36% of his return points

Won 47% of his break points

Opponents have held 80% of the time against him

Donskoy has a decent return of serve, he will look to keep the ball deep off both wings, without being too aggressive and going for any outright winners, even off the second serve. I expect him to make plenty of balls today and put the Ferrer serve under pressure at times.

Ferrer’s Recent Hard Court Mean Returning Stats

Won 38% of his return points

Won 28% of his break points

Opponents have held 80% of the time against him

Ferrer also has a decent return of serve, like Donskoy he will look to return the ball with interest without going for too much. The stat that jumps out at me above is his incredibly low % of break points converted, the recent Tour average is 40%, so as you can see he is going to need to drastically improve from his current 28% in order to stand any chance of breaking Donskoy regularly today.

Donskoy’s Groundstrokes

Solid and consistent is the best way to describe Donskoy’s groundstrokes. He won’t make too many unforced errors and will hit the ball with depth off both wings. He will look to get his forehand into play as much as possible, and he loves to hit that inside out. His backhand side is his weaker wing, he will typically flatten this out and use it as a ‘set-up’ shot in order to get his forehand into play.

Ferrer’s Groundstrokes

Very similar to Donskoy, Ferrer is solid and consistent on both sides. He has a heavy topspin forehand and a flatter backhand. The Spaniard will spend most of his time deep beyond the baseline, and will be happy to exchange in long rallies. Also, like Donskoy, he possess’s no huge weapons off the ground and will rely on his guile, court craft and athleticism to win a majority of his points.


I think this is an interesting match, the bookies make Ferrer a heavy odds on favourite, and don’t get me wrong I think there’s a good chance that he will win. However, I think Donskoy has more than a sniff of a chance of winning this, I think his price will trade lower in play and i’d be surprised not to see 3 sets here.

Our AI articles are NOT written by a real person and are provided for entertainment only. They may contain content which is inaccurate but we are hoping our AI bot, Rose, will become better over time. The AI category is the ONLY section of that has zero human input.

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