Australian Open draw: 5 matches to watch | ATP tour

Tennis fans have been eagerly anticipating the first major tournament of the year, and with the draw now decided, it’s clear that… Australian Open Championship It will save fireworks from day one.

Thursday’s draw ceremony revealed a set of random matches in the men’s singles opening round, including Matthew Berettini seizes Britain’s Andy Murray And Andrey Rublev squared with Dominic Tim. breaks down five matches to watch in Round 1 Down Under.

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[13] Matthew Berettini (ITA) vs. Britain’s Andy Murray (Britain)

Murray has a chance for instant grand slam revenge after a disputed four-set loss to Berrettini in 2022 US Open Championship. Berrettini also beat Murray in the Stuttgart final last season and will seal a 3-1 victory over ATP Head2Head in the Melbourne encounter. Murray’s only win came against Brittini in 2019 (Beijing).

Berrettini, which has been featured on Netflix’s breaking point Tennis documentary series, has enjoyed a better career to Australian Open Championship Last year’s semi-finals, including an epic five-set win against Carlos Alcaraz. His journey with the Italian team to the opening final United Cup It leaves him with plenty to play before facing Murray. Berrettini produced a 3-2 record in singles to open his 2023 season in the mixed-gender team event, posting a career-high 10 win against Casper Road And Hubert Hurkach before heavy losses Stefanos Tsitsipas And Taylor Fritz.

Murray, by contrast, has only played one match on the ATP Tour this season – a straight sets defeat by eventual finalist Sebastian Korda In the Adelaide International 1. The Briton, a five-time finalist in Melbourne, reached the second round last year after claiming his first win at the event since 2017.

[5] Andrey Rublev against. [WC] Dominic Tim (AUT)

Two of the game’s biggest base hitters will trade blows in a match that would have been booked for later innings in years past. As Thiem continues to work his way back up to the Pepperstone ATP rankings after a wrist injury, he has lost protection from a Grand Slam seed. But if he manages to break Rublev’s winning streak in four matches in a row in the ATP Head2Head series, Thiem will inherit the path of the fifth seed in the draw.

The duo last met in the 2022 semi-finals in Gijón, and Rublev cruised to a 6-4, 6-4 victory on his way to the title.

Neither man would be particularly happy to take on such a tough opponent in the first round in Melbourne, but whoever comes through in this massive encounter will be tested on the trip ahead.

[1] Rafael Nadal (ESP) vs. Jack Draper (Britain)

title holder Rafael Nadal He wouldn’t have the luxury of playing his way to a championship, with the risk Jack Draper Waiting for him in the opening round. While Nadal is still chasing his first win of 2023 after two United Cup With his defeat, Draper already owns a Top 20 win this year after his win Karen Khachanov to advance to the semi-finals Adelaide International 2.

Draper is also upset Tommy Paul in Adelaide in what would be a warning shot for Nadal, who was beaten by Paul V Rolex Paris Masters In November.

The match will be the first between 36-year-old Nadal and 21-year-old Draper, who competed in the Next Generation ATP Finals In Milan to conclude his 2022 season.

“It would be great to play with him on the court,” Draper said of Nadal, “he’s a great champion.”[There are] Obviously a lot of feelings when I think about playing with him, but here’s one thing… I still have to go and play tomorrow [in Adelaide] Hopefully he will do well in this tournament first.

“Whatever happens, it will be a special occasion for me, I’m still very young in my career, so it’s great to have the kind of experiences and exposure to play someone like Rafa on such a big court. But I want to play well and I want to compete hard and give my best.” my best.”

Thansi Kokkinakis (Australia) vs. Fabio Fognini (ITA)

Favorite home Thansi Kokkinakis He will be looking to extend his perfect 2-0 record against Fabio Fognini In this match, one year after the break-in Australian Open Championship Title doubles side by side Nick Kyrgios. The Aussie has never gone beyond the individual second round in his home slam, but he will enter this year’s event full of confidence after an upset Andrey Rublev In Adelaide this week – a year after he lifted his first ATP Tour title in his hometown.

Fognini will be chasing his first win of 2023 after a three-set defeat by Jenson Brooksby This week in ASB Classic. The Italian arrived Australian Open Championship the fourth round on four occasions, most recently in 2020 and 2021. He also reached the men’s doubles quarter-finals at the event last season alongside Simon Polelli.

[21] Borna Couric (CRO) vs. Use Lehecka (June)

two Next Generation ATP Finals Alumni will compete in this interesting competition, as both men are eager to build on strong seasons in 2022. Borna Couric He was named Player of the Year at the 2022 ATP Awards for his success after missing a year due to a shoulder injury. Returning to Indian Wells, the 26-year-old is back in the winners’ circle in style Western and Southern Opendefeat nadal, Said Auger too and Tsitsipas on their way to the ATP Masters 1000 title.

Use Lehecka He finished his 2022 campaign by reaching the finals in Milan before the start of the new season, with wins against Alexander Zverev In the United Cup. The 21-year-old is set to meet Coric for the first time in Melbourne.

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