• Berdych takes on hometown favorite Devvarman

    1/3/13 5:29 AM | Cheryl Murray
    Berdych takes on hometown favorite Devvarman The Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych will kick off his 2013 season against Indian crowd favorite Somdev Devvarman, while No. 3 seed Marin Cilic takes on Sergiy Stakhovsky.

    Tomas Berdych (1) vs. Somdev Devvarman

    Tomas Berdych is firmly entrenched in the top 10. The world No. 6 snagged the title in Stockholm last fall and he put in an appearance at the World Tour Finals, winning a round robin match against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

    Somdev Devvarman spent most of the 2012 season sidelined due to a shoulder injury. Prior to this week, Devvarman hadn't won a match since October of 2011, but he won his first round match this week against Jan Hernych.

    Berdych is by far the better player, but the home-court advantage might give Devvarman a chance to make the match competitive. The Czech in two tight sets.

    Marin Cilic (3) vs. Sergiy Stakhovsky

    World No. 15 Marin Cilic had a three-set win over the Ukraine's Sergiy Stakhovsky this past August at the Cincinnati Masters. The two men also met another time, back in 2010 at the Paris Masters. Cilic also won that encounter in three sets.

    Stakhovsky's ranking, which currently sits at No. 103, has been on a steady slide downhill since the 2011 season. His best result was a quarterfinal showing in Stockholm and a final at the Furth Challenger event.

    Prediction - Cilic had some difficulty with Stakhovsky in the past, but with the Ukrainian's form questionable, Cilic may get through this one in straight sets.

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
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