Tomic Takes On Tall Timber

Image courtesy of dailytelegraph.com.au, Picture: Michael Klein
Bernard Tomic remains unbeaten in 2013. Image courtesy of dailytelegraph.com.au/Michael Klein
Not too many players can claim to have won as many matches at Bernard Tomic in 2013, but his second round opponent, German Daniel Brands , already has ten victories to his name in January. He made it to the semi-finals in Doha where he fell 7-5 7-5 against Richard Gasquet, and picked up the scalps of Frenchmen Gael Monfils and Jeremy Chardy along the way after getting through qualifying. He again made it through ‘qualies’ at Melbourne Park before disposing of 27th seed Martin Klizan in four sets on Tuesday.

Ranked 120th in the world, Brands is a far more dangerous opponent than his standing suggests. His record in Grand Slams is poor, having lost in the first round in seven of the nine main draws he has made. In saying that, he reached the fourth round at Wimbledon in 2010 with wins over Igor Andreev, Nikolay Davydenko and Victor Hanescu, before falling in four sets to eventual runner-up Tomas Berdych. At the US Open last year in the second round he stretched 12th seed Marin Cilic to 7-5 in the fifth , so he has the potential to match it with topliners. His finish to 2012 was far better than the start, reaching the round of 16 in Vienna before losing in a final set tie-break to Juan Martin del Potro, while he won the sixth Chellenger final of his career at home in the German city of Eckental.

Tomic barely worked up a sweat in moving past Argentina claycourter Leonardo Mayer in straight sets on Tuesday night, and the reward for beating Brands is a likely third round blockbuster against Roger Federer. The Gold Coaster knows so little about the German that he is turning to YouTube for match vision. Regardless of his opponent, Tomic should go in to the match full of confidence after his tournament win in Sydney and three straight victories to start the year at the Hopman Cup, including a triumph over Novak Djokovic.

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