Three events will make for a busy week on the TBEN, with ATP 250s in Metz and San Diego on the schedule alongside the weekend’s Laver Cup, the last event in Roger Federer’s storied career.
Debutant Daniil Medvedev leads the field at the Moselle Open in Metz, while Daniel Evans and Jenson Brooksby lead the pack at the San Diego Open. The Laver Cup, which will be held from Friday to Sunday, will see each of the Big Four – Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray – compete for the first time.
ATPTour.com looks ahead at five things to watch from each event.
Watch draw: Metz | San Diego
FIVE THINGS TO SEE IN METZ
1) Medvedev’s debut: Medvedev will make his debut in ‘The Green City’ as he prays for his second TBEN title of 2022 (Los Cabos). The 26-year-old will be eager for a week of recovery after his fourth-round departure from the US Open ultimately cost him his No. 1 Pepperstone ATP ranking. He enters the hard courts of Metz as the number 4 in the world for his first competitive action since competing in New York.
2) Returning Champion Hurkacz: World number 10 Hubert Hurkacz didn’t drop a set en route to the 2021 Metz title, including wins against Andy Murray in the quarter-finals and Pablo Carreno Busta in the final. That trophy was his third from 2021. Hurkacz, who was already title winner this season in Halle, hopes to win the Metz double crown with Jan Zielinski last year and hopes to secure his second multi-trophy campaign in France. After reaching the Montreal final, he was 1-2 at Cincinnati and the US Open.
3) Home hopes: Eighth seed Adrian Mannarino leads seven Frenchmen in the main draw, not counting potential qualifiers. Also among the local favorites in action are Ugo Humbert, Gilles Simon, Arthur Rinderknech and Richard Gasquet. Nine of the past 12 Metz champions have been French, including five consecutive French champions from 2009-13.
4) Musetti, Rune, Thiem Add Intrigue: #NextGenATP stars Lorenzo Musetti and Holger Rune are in third and fourth place, separated by only one place in the Pepperstone ATP rankings in the world rankings 30 and 31 respectively. They also occupy third and fourth places in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race to Milan. Musetti makes his debut in Metz, while Rune returns after reaching the quarter-finals as a qualifier a year ago. Wild card Dominic Thiem is ready for his second appearance in Metz after a run to the 2016 final (left to Lucas Pouille).
5) Puetz/Venus Lead Double Draw: Tim Puetz and Michael Venus lead the doubles competition, with Lloyd Glasspool and Harri Heliovaara placed second. Third seed Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin are one of four all-French duos in the draw.
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FIVE THINGS TO SEE IN SAN DIEGO
1) Evans returns as top seed: Britain’s Daniel Evans fell to compatriot Cameron Norrie in the second round of San Diego last year, but the world No. 25 is the UK’s only representative in this year’s singles draw.
2) Americans dot the draw: Jenson Brooksby, Marcos Giron, Brandon Nakashima and JJ Wolf are all seeded in San Diego, with six other Americans also in the draw, not counting potential qualifiers. Brandon Holt was awarded a wildcard after his stunning progress in qualifying and in the second round on his US Open debut.
3) Spain’s Martinez placed fourth: Pedro Martinez leads a host of Spanish and South American players, including sixth-seeded Alejandro Tabilo of Chile and Daniel Elahi Galan of Colombia. Galan will aim to continue his strong form after reaching the third round of the US Open as a qualifier, with Stefanos Tsitsipas making the stunning impression in the first round along the way.
4) All Aussie Openers: Two all-Australian matchups are set for the opening round. Seventh seed James Duckworth will meet Alexei Popyrin, while Jason Kubler will face Christopher O’Connell.
5) Lammons/Withrow placed second in doubles: The combination of Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow is one of four all-American teams in San Diego doubles. One of those teams – Evan King and Denis Kudla – will face the top leaguers Santiago Gonzalez and Andres Molteni in the opening round.
FIVE THINGS TO SEE AT LAVER CUP
1) Farewell to Federer: Federer announced on Thursday that this Laver Cup would be the last competitive event of his tennis career. It’s a fitting final as the Swiss is set to team up with many of his legendary Team Europe rivals, including Nadal, Djokovic and Murray.
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2) Top 10 talents: In addition to home field advantage at the O2 Arena in London, Team Europe has four Top 10 players: US Open finalist and world champion No. 2 Casper Ruud, No. 3 Nadal, No. 6 Tsitsipas and No. 7 Djokovic.
3) Team Europe puts perfection on the line: In addition to the pomp and circumstance surrounding Federer’s farewell, Team Europe will also focus on building on his excellent track record in the competition. They have not lost the Laver Cup since its inception in 2017, winning the title on all four previous occasions.
4) Americans lead team world: In addition to World No. 12 Taylor Fritz, the highest ranked player on Captain John McEnroe’s team, Americans Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock will also play a key role for Team World. Also on the roster are Felix Auger-Aliassime, Diego Schwartzman and Alex de Minaur.
5) Unique format: The Laver Cup is played over three days, September 23-25, spread over five sessions. Each game won is worth one point on Friday, two points on Saturday and three points on a high-stakes Sunday. The first team to reach 13 points (out of a possible 24) wins the Laver Cup.