• Muller, Mayer square off in Open Sud de France first round

    1/30/12 3:29 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Muller, Mayer square off in Open Sud de France first round First-round action in Montpellier gets underway on Monday. Gilles Muller and Florian Mayer will help kick off the proceedings.

    Gilles Muller and Florian Mayer will be going head-to-head for the first time in their careers when they clash in the opening round of the Open Sud de France on Monday evening.

    Muller has been plagued by injuries throughout his career, but he stayed healthy in 2011 and is looking to build on the momentum now. However, the Luxembourgian is just 1-3 so far this season and coming off a first-round Australian Open loss to Mardy Fish.

    Mayer caught fire last fall and upset Rafael Nadal en route to the Shanghai Masters quarterfinals, but his 2012 campaign is off to an inauspicious start. The German retired in the Brisbane first round due to a hip strain and it forced him to withdraw from the Aussie Open. As a result, Mayer will be looking to complete a match for the first time this season.

    Muller registers 34 spots behind Mayer at No. 55 in the world as of Sunday. However, the unseeded entrant has an edge in health and court surface. The indoor hard court will aid Muller's big serve and help him keep points short.

    Even if Mayer is 100 percent, Muller should prevail in three sets.

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