Photo: Peter Staples/ATP
Welcome to the Road to the National Bank Open. Every week, we will keep you updated on all the action on the ATP Tour as we build towards the National Bank Open in Montreal, which takes place from Aug. 8 to 14.
DAYS UNTIL THE NATIONAL BANK OPEN: 18
On the heels of a short break after Wimbledon, many of the best players in the world are back on clay this week at the ATP 500 event in Hamburg, Germany before heading to North America for the start of the American hard court swing in Atlanta.
Leading the way is top seed Carlos Alcaraz, who survived a first-round scare courtesy of German wild card Nicola Kuhn, Karen Khachanov, and Fabio Fognini, who notched his 400th career win in the opening round, becoming the 14th active player to reach the milestone.
Meanwhile, Casper Ruud and Matteo Berrettini lead the way at the ATP 250 clay court event in Gstaad, Switzerland.
In Hamburg, Fognini and Khachanov will meet in a marquee second-round contest on Thursday while Alcaraz faces Filip Krajinovic. The quarter-finals will also feature a matchup between two of the ATP’s top young stars in Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and Lorenzo Musetti.
The top two seeds in Gstaad will face stiff competition from the likes of Roberto Bautista Agut and Dominic Thiem.
This is the type of week where Ruud usually excels. The 23-year-old leads the ATP Tour in clay-court wins, tournament finals, and titles since the start of the 2020 season.
STORIES TO WATCH:
THE COMEBACK CONTINUES FOR CORIC AND THIEM
Former world no. 12 Borna Coric, who was away from the tour for a year recovering from shoulder surgery, has advanced to the first quarter-final since his return in March at Hamburg. He’ll next face Alex Molcan who upset Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta in round two.
After advancing to the final eight in Bastad last week, former world no. 3 Dominic Thiem, another prominent recent injury returnee, won his first two matches in Gstaad and appears poised for a second consecutive strong showing.
Ten days after withdrawing from Wimbledon with an abdominal injury, Rafael Nadal is back on the court at his academy getting ready for the National Bank Open.
After winning 42 of his first 56 matches this season, Stefanos Tsitsipas is enjoying some well-deserved downtime at home in Greece before making the trip to Montreal.
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