Marinko Matosevic bowed out in the first round in Brisbane. Source: Chris Hyde/Getty Images
Australia’s top two ranked men will go toe-to-toe in the first round at the Sydney International on Tuesday, when Marinko Matosevic faces Bernard Tomic . While Tomic has got all the headlines in recent times, Matosevic is three places higher than the brash 20 year-old at 49 on the most recent world rankings and was named the most improved player on the ATP Tour in 2012.
27 year-old Matosevic lost to eventual semi-finalist Kei Nishikori of Japan in the opening round at the Brisbane International last week and will be looking to improve on that showing here, while Tomic could hardly have started 2013 any better. Tomic won all three of his singles matches at the Hopman Cup in Perth, with his victims including world number one and Australian Open favourite Novak Djokovic.
Although Tomic and Matosevic have never met on the ATP Tour, the pair have locked horns five times in Challenger and Futures matches. Since Matosevic was victorious in the first two matchesin 2008 – when his opponent was just 15 – Tomic has had little trouble disposing of his elder rival in their next three meetings. The most recent of those was in the quarter-finals of a Challenger event on the grass at Nottingham in 2011, when he recorded a straight sets win. Although Matosevic has improved since that meeting, there is little doubt that the world number 52 has also and he will be a stiff test for Australia’s top ranked player if he is able to show the form that he was in at the Hopman Cup.
Wildcard John Millman , who took Andy Murray to three sets at the Brisbane International last week,will also be on court on Tuesday when he faces Spaniard Tommy Robredo .
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