James Blake begins his Erste Bank Open campaign in Vienna against Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.
Blake has been in a fine run of form over the past fortnight, reaching the final of the Sacramento Challenger and then returning to Europe and defeating Juan Martin Del Potro and David Nalbandian on to the way to the semis in Stockholm.
Blake served superbly all week in Sweden and his performance against Del Potro was his best for several years. On an equally fast surface in Austria he should thrive and he'll fancy his chances against third seed Jurgen Melzer in the second round if he gets past Garcia-Lopez.
The Spaniard was ranked 23 at the start of this season but it's been a poor 2011 and he's only won a handful of matches since the French Open, tumbling right down the rankings to 68.
He was edged out in the first round of Stockholm last week by Kevin Anderson in a big serving encounter. Expect this one to be close again but Blake is full of confidence right now and look for him to edge it.
Blake won their only previous match 7-6(4), 6-4 in Stockholm six years ago.