Week In Preview: the show goes on with a trio of ATP tournaments
The majors are over for 2020, but the men’s tour rolls on. Looking ahead at ATP events in St. Petersburg, Cologne, and Sardinia
October 12, 2020
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With the end of Roland Garros, the Grand Slams are finished for the year. But the show, as always in tennis, goes on. Or, in this case, the men’s show goes on. With the WTA’s fall tournaments in China canceled, the ATP is the only game on TV this week. Here’s a look ahead at the draws in St. Petersburg, Cologne, and Sardinia.
St. Petersburg Open
St. Petersburg, Russia
$ 1,400,000; ATP 500
Indoor hard court
By the time Rafael Nadal had dusted the clay off his sneakers in Paris, the men’s tour was already starting up again on indoor hard courts in St. Petersburg. This is the week’s only 500-level event, and it has the strongest field. Daniil Medvedev, Denis Shapovalov, Andrey Rublev, Karen Khachanov, Stan Wawrinka, and Milos Raonic were the top six seeds at the start of the tournament.
Of those players, Medvedev and Rublev are probably the most interesting at the moment. Medvedev is the defending champion, but he’s coming off a first-round loss at Roland Garros. Rublev has had a breakout season, with three titles and trips to the quarters at the US Open and French Open, but he’s played a lot of tennis of late. Rublev and Shapovalov have a chance to qualify for the ATP’s year-end championships for the first time.
First-round matches to watch
Medvedev vs. Richard Gasquet
Rublev vs. Vasek Pospisil
Raonic vs. JJ Wolf
$ 500,000; ATP 250
Indoor hard court
Cologne makes its debut as a men’s-tour host city this week, and no, Bett1 is not a gambling site—it’s a mattress manufacturer, thank you very much.
The 250-level tournament is headlined by Germany’s Alexander Zverev. Hopefully, the painful memories of the US Open have begun to fade for him; he could face Andy Murray, who beat him at the Western and Southern Open in August, in his opening match. Zverev is followed in the seedings by Roberto Bautista Agut, Felix Auger-Aliassime, and Benoit Paire. The 32-year-old Bautista Agut has a chance to qualify for the tour’s year-end event for the first time.
First-round match to watch: Murray vs. Fernando Verdasco
Forte Village Sardegna Open
$ 300,000; ATP 250
The clay season isn’t over quite yet. The tour stops this week in Santa Margherita di Pula, Italy, for a new 250. There are probably worse places to be than Sardinia at this time of year.
First-round match to watch: Corentin Moutet vs. Frances Tiafoe