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Wawrinka vs Harrison tennis live streaming, preview and predictions – Can Wawrinka bring Rotterdam form to Acapulco opener?

Hannah Wilks in ATP Tour 25 Feb 2019
  • Stan Wawrinka faces Ryan Harrison in the first round of the Abierto Mexicano Telcel
  • Wawrinka vs Harrison is live from Acapulco on Monday at 8pm local/2am GMT
Stan Wawrinka (KEVIN VAN PAASSEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Stan Wawrinka aims to build on his run to the Rotterdam final as he starts his Abierto Mexicano Telcel against Ryan Harrison in Acapulco on Monday.

Playing Acapulco for the first time in six years, Stan Wawrinka looks to make a winning return to the Abierto Mexicano Telcel as he takes on Ryan Harrison.

Stan Wawrinka last played the Abierto Mexicano Telcel when it was a clay-court event (LUIS ACOSTA/AFP/Getty Images)
Wawrinka, a semifinalist in Acapulco in 2012, last played the tournament in 2013 – back when it was still held on clay and part of the ‘Golden Swing’. Since switching to hard courts in 2014, however, Acapulco has gone from strength to strength and the 500-level event is now a very popular destination with top players looking to warm up for the big American hard-court events of March, Indian Wells and Miami – hence a packed draw which this year includes two of the world’s top three, Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev, even if defending champion Juan Martin del Potro was forced to pull out. 

Wawrinka finds himself in Nadal’s quarter of the draw and could be headed for a quarterfinal clash with the Spaniard – but that’s still two wins away as he prepares to face the USA’s Ryan Harrison in the first round, with a potential clash with another American, Steve Johnson, awaiting the winner.

Currently ranked at an underwhelming world no. 41, Wawrinka as everybody knows is still trying to rebuild his career and top-10 ranking after multiple knee surgeries in 2017. The process was a stuttering one throughout 2018 and one which saw him drop as low as world no. 261 last June, but there have been definite signs that the former world no. 3 is recovering something like the form which saw him win three Grand Slams in 2014-16. He was unlucky to run into on-fire opponents in January, ousted by eventual champion Roberto Bautista Agut in the quarterfinals in Doha and by Milos Raonic in the second round at the Australian Open, and a first-round defeat by Marius Copil in Sofia, where Wawrinka was a semifinalist in 2018, wasn’t encouraging.

But in Rotterdam, Wawrinka put together a fantastic run of wins against high-quality opponents, beating Benoit Paire, Denis Shapovalov, Raonic and Kei Nishikori for the loss of just one set to reach his first final since the 2017 French Open. He fell short there to Gael Monfils in three sets, but it was some very, very good tennis from the Swiss man with the muscular one-handed backhand, and raises hopes that we will once again see Wawrinka as a meaningful presence at the top of the game – where he has been sorely missed – in 2019.

First up for Wawrinka in Rotterdam is a first-time clash with Ryan Harrison, who earned his way into the 500-level draw by playing qualifying, defeating wildcard Juan Alejandro Hernandez and then Adrian Menendez-Maceiras.

Ryan Harrison (PAUL CROCK/AFP/Getty Images)
Harrison, now 26 and once the great hope of American’s men tennis, broke back into the top 100 at the very end of 2016 and then into the top 50 in 2017 after winning his maiden ATP World Tour title in Memphis, reaching a career high of world no. 40 in July 2017. Finishing the season at world no. 45, Harrison didn’t manage to defend his Memphis title but did make ATP Tour finals in Brisbane (losing to Nick Kyrgios) and Atlanta (losing to John Isner). But he only played one match after losing in the first round of the US Open to Kevin Anderson and ended the season out of the top 50 again and at 21-21.

So far in 2019, Harrison is 4-4. Like Wawrinka, he had some tough draws in January, going 1-3 as he faced Kyrgios in Brisbane, Yoshihito Nishioka in Sydney and Daniil Medvedev in the second round of the Australian Open. He gave a walkover to Mario Vilella Martinez in the second round of the Dallas Challenger, and suffered what could be considered a disappointing loss to Paolo Lorenzi in the second round of the New York Open, where the conditions should have favoured the American, so it hasn’t really been a great season for Harrison so far, whose qualifying victories in Acapulco are the first back-to-back matches he’s won in 2019.

Harrison has had decent results in Acapulco in the past, beating Grigor Dimitrov there in 2015, Marin Cilic in 2016 and Isner in 2018, making the quarterfinals in 2016 and 2018 and the semifinals there in 2015, so he can obviously be a dangerous opponent in these conditions and Wawrinka, as we know, is prone to being erratic at the best of times. Harrison obviously doesn’t come close to matching Wawrinka for weight of shot and general weaponry, however, and it’s a match that a disciplined Wawrinka should win if he plays anything like he did in Rotterdam.

Wawrinka vs Harrison Abierto Mexicano Telcel tennis is live from Acapulco from 8pm local/2am GMT

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Wawrinka vs Harrison tennis live streaming, preview and predictions – Can Wawrinka bring Rotterdam form to Acapulco opener?

Stan Wawrinka vs Ryan Harrison live streaming, preview and predictions for the Abierto Mexicano Telcel first-round match on Monday 25 February: Harrison has a good track record of upsetting seeds in Acapulco but Wawrinka is on fine form

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