Before I provide a rundown of this week’s ATP Tour tennis action I just wanted to apologise for any confusion caused by Monday’s tennis article, specifically the tournament selections. I missed out confirming the prices and selections at the bottom of that page so I will confirm what they are in the selections section at the end of this tennis article.
The first round matches are now underway at the ATP 500 Washington DC, ATP 250 Los Cabos, Mexico and ATP 250 Kitzbuhel, Austria and by the time you read this article most of the matches should be complete. At Kitzbuhel there were no major first round shocks and the only seeds to lose were fifth seed Simon, who won the first set 6-1 but Gstaad winner Berrettini showed great character to fight back and take it in three. Seventh seed German Struff was dispatched in straight sets by the in-form Daniel from Japan and sixth seed Marterer proved to good for Hamburg semi-finalist Zopp and eighth seed Lajovic made light work of beating veteran Garcia-Lopez in straight sets.
The top four Kitzbuhel seeds commence their campaigns today and/or tomorrow, Thiem faces qualifier Kizan and the Slovakian leads the head-to-head 2-1, Kohlschreiber faces fellow veteran and qualifier Istomin and he leads the head-to-head 5-2. Third seed Verdasco faces a tough opener against the Talented Jarry from Chile and this is the first time they have met on the ATP Tour. The same applies to fourth seed and two time winner Haase and talented NextGen potential Spaniard Munar.
At Washington DC much of the Mondays play was interrupted due to rain and only four matches were completed. American Smyzcek got the Double (advised Monday) off to a good start beating Berankis as predicted but unfortunately that was as good as it got, as the single on Basic lost and Simon let the second leg of the double down. Andy Murray made both a welcome and successful return to the ATP Tour at Washington on Monday against the talented American NextGen potential star Mackenzie McDonald, but it was far from plain sailing for Murray who had to come back from a set down to win 3-6 6-4 7-5.
However, Murray’s task won’t get any easier as he faces compatriot, friend, British number one and fourth seed Kyle Edmunds, who beat him comfortably in his first match back from injury at Nottingham on grass this year. Top seed and reigning champion Sascha Zverev was due to play his first match since Wimbledon against veteran Jaziri from Turkey. Zverev leads the head-to-head 2-1 and will need to be sharp and close to his best to beat the experienced Jaziri, who is experiencing the best season of his career. Second seed and Atlanta winner Isner will look to carry that momentum through this week and he faces compatriot Noah Rubin for a place in the third round but will need to be sharp and at his best again as Rubin is one of a host of talented up and coming younger American players.
As mentioned above fourth seed Edmunds faces Murray for a place in the third round, Edmunds leads the head-to-head 2-1 and if he’s fully recovered from the virus that caused him to withdraw from Gstaad he’s more than capable of taking advantage of a rusty Murray again.
Klizan Win (25/1)
Haase Win (14/1)
Istomin EW (33/1)