In only three days, Lucas Pouille & Karen Khachanov met twice on the ATP circuit. On their first encounter in Marseille 250’s Final, the Russian beat the French 7-5 3-6 7-5. Then, in the following tournament in Dubai, Lucas Pouille got his revenge and prevailed also in three sets: 6-4 3-6 6-3.
Tennis Profiler charted these two matches to see how Karen Khachanov beat Lucas Pouille in Marseille and vice versa. Then, Tennis Profiler used his unique program for Match Stats Prediction to see the similarities & differences between its prediction and the real outcome.
Eventually, Tennis Profiler pointed out what was the key points between these two players. What was the shot(s) that fluctuated the most between a win & a loss.
How Khachanov Beat Pouille in Marseille
When Karen Khachanov beat Lucas Pouille in Marseille 250’s Final, he won three points more (92 vs 89). He got an edge against the French this way:
+7 Points with the Serve. 32 aces/service winners & 2 double faults for Khachanov against 27 aces/service winner & 4 double faults for Pouille. Khachanov made the difference against Pouille at 58% with the Serve Effectiveness.
+5 Points with the Backhand. 7 points & 3 errors for Khachanov against 12 points & 13 errors for Pouille. Khachanov made the difference against Pouille at 42% with the Backhand Effectiveness.
We note that the Return (+5 Pouille), the Forehand (+2 Pouille) and the Volley (+2 Pouille) didn’t explain Khachanov Victory.
Tennis Profiler Stats Prediction said that if Khachanov had to beat Pouille, it would have been like the chart below.
Except for the Forehand, Tennis Profiler Stats Prediction was 70% correct. The Stats Prediction was actually expecting 30% more errors from Pouille with his Forehand. But it could point out the higher ratio of errors from Pouille with the Backhand and the total domination of Khachanov with the serve.
How Pouille Beat Khachanov in Dubai
When Lucas Pouille beat Karen Khachanov in Dubai 500’s 2nd Round, he won four points more (82 vs 78). He got an edge against the Russian this way:
+11 with the Forehand. 19 points & 11 errors for Pouille against 11 points & 14 errors for Khachanov. Pouille made the difference against Khachanov at 65% with the Forehand Effectiveness.
+6 with the Return. 3 points & 4 errors for Pouille against 3 points & 10 errors for Khachanov. Pouille made the difference against Khachanov at 35% with the Return Effectiveness.
We note that the Serve (+4 Khachanov), the Backhand (+8 Khachaonv) and the Volley (+1 Khachanov) didn’t explain Pouille Victory.
Tennis Profiler Stats Prediction said that if Pouille had to beat Khachanov, it would have been like the chart below.
Tennis Profiler Stats Prediction was perfect with the Forehand but not with the rest. The Return didn’t appear to be one of the winning factor. However, given that the main key was the forehand, the Match Stats Prediction could completely point it out.
Shots Fluctuations Between a Win & a Loss (seen from Lucas Pouille angle)
• Serve: +3 (-7 when Pouille lost in Marseille & -4 when he won in Dubai)
• Return: +1 (+5 when Pouille lost in Marseille & +6 when he won in Dubai)
• Forehand: +9 (+2 when Pouille lost in Marseille & +11 when he won in Dubai)
• Backhand: -3 (-5 when Pouille lost in Marseille & -8 when he won in Dubai)
• Volley: -3 (+2 when Pouille lost in Marseille & -1 when he won in Dubai)
So we can say that in these two matches, the Key Points (or Biggest Fluctuations) were 69% the Forehand, 23% the Serve & 8% the Return.
Like that, Tennis Profiler found 69% of the Fluctuations with its Stats Prediction Program. It could point out that the Forehand was the main key explaining Lucas Pouille or Karen Khachanov’s victory.
So, as we could see, the main key between Pouille & Khachanov was the Forehand. It has to be said that Karen Khachanov played especially well this shot in Marseille against Pouille but also during the whole week and this mainly explained his victory there. As a reminder, in Tennis Profiler Stats Profile, Karen Khachanov has only 2 stars with the Forehand (March 2018). In this match, even though he got slightly dominated by Lucas Pouille (-2), he would have got a 3-4 stars with this shot. For him, this is for sure the shot with the most fluctuations between a win & a loss. In Marseille, the bounce was lower allowing the Russian to hit balls closer to the hips level. Lacking a bit of wrist & flexibility on that side, Khachanov struggled much more in Dubai where the bounce was higher. This could explain the fluctuation between the win & the loss.
Otherwise, Lucas Pouille’s personal Forehand results in Marseille and Dubai were exactly the same. 21 points & 13 errors in Marseille (+8) and 19 points & 11 errors in Dubai (+8). As a consequence, this is only Khachanov’s Forehand results that fluctuated between a win & a loss. If we compare the two forehand results Khachanov got, the one from Dubai is much closer to his general average than the one in Marseille. However, maybe the Russian has been working hard on that side in the off-season and his work will be paying off for the rest of the season. We will see that especially on clay, to be charted…
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