• Davydenko, Brown clash in Stuttgart first round

    7/9/12 3:13 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Davydenko, Brown clash in Stuttgart first round Nikolay Davydenko will contest his Stuttgart opener on Monday. The slumping Russian is set to face Germany's own Dustin Brown.

    Nikolay Davydenko and Dustin Brown will be going head-to-head for the first time in their careers when they do battle in round one of the Mercedes Cup on Monday.

    Davydenko is a huge favorite on paper at No. 47 in the world (as of Sunday), but he is clearly on the downside of his career at 31 years old. The Russian owns a disappointing 12-13 record for the year after getting blown out by eventual runner-up Andy Murray in the Wimbledon first round.

    Brown enjoyed a decent showing at the All-England Club, where he qualified for the main draw only to get David Ferrer in his opener (it resulted in a straight-set loss). The Jamaican-born German is 1-3 at the ATP level this season and he registers at No. 164 in the rankings.

    This would almost certainly be a competitive matchup on a fast surface, because Brown (6'5'') serves big and can implement a power game to great effect. On clay it will be much tougher for him against Davydenko, who should be able to play his way into baseline rallies. Davydenko in straight sets is the pick.

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