The top names – Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Roddick – are not in singles play today, but the Canadian Open Toronto still warrants some interest Monday.
In an American battle, the mercurial No. 16 seed Sam Querrey meets veteran qualifier Michael Russell. Querrey, the LA champ, is starting to get the label of a small tournament players – he wins the small ones, loses early at the big ones. Let’s see if Sam can do some damage this week.
Gilles Simon is up against No. 12 seed Mikhail Youhzny. Simon beat Roddick last week in D.C., if he beats Youhzny here maybe it’s a signal the former Top 10 Frenchman has fully returned from his knee injury.
Late in the day on Grandstand, Ernests Gulbis takes on Tomaz Bellucci in what’s probably the best match of the day. Since incurring a hamstring injury at the French, Gulbis has struggled to find that form we saw of him in the spring. Bellucci has a hard-hitting Brazilian lefty who some peg as a future Top 10 player.
And in the evening Nadal and Djokovic will begin their hardcourt swing in tandem by teaming up for the first time for some doubles. They 1-2 ranked players meet Canadians Pospsil and Raonic.
“Last year I didn’t play because I had problems with the knee,” Nadal said over the weekend. “This year I like the idea. Doubles is an important part of the game and you can improve lots of parts of your game. Playing with Novak will be positive. I am excited. He is one of the most talented players in the world. To have him in my half of the court will be a nice experience. I am feeling confident with my body. I am not thinking of my body, I am thinking about tennis. I am in perfect condition.”
Unfortunately there doesn’t appear to be any US TV coverage today. Tennis Channel will begin televising matches tomorrow.
I should also mention that today is in fact the first time in history no American men are ranked in the ATP Top 10 – Roddick has slipped to No. 11. Truly a sad day for American tennis!
MONDAY TORONTO SCHEDULE
CENTRE COURT start 11:00 am
S Stakhovsky (UKR) vs R Gasquet (FRA)
Not Before 1:00 PM
G Simon (FRA) vs  M Youzhny (RUS)
[Q] M Russell (USA) vs  S Querrey (USA)
Not Before 7:30 PM
 J Melzer (AUT) vs [WC] P Polansky (CAN)
[WC] V Pospisil (CAN) / M Raonic (CAN) vs N Djokovic (SRB) / R Nadal (ESP)
GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
V Hanescu (ROU) vs [WC] M Raonic (CAN)
T Robredo (ESP) vs [Q] J Nieminen (FIN)
F Lopez (ESP) vs T de Bakker (NED)
E Gulbis (LAT) vs T Bellucci (BRA)
 N Almagro (ESP) vs [Q] I Marchenko (UKR)
COURT 1 start 11:00 am
J Chela (ARG) vs A Falla (COL)
[Q] D Istomin (UZB) vs J Benneteau (FRA)
R Hutchins (GBR) / A Murray (GBR) vs P Kohlschreiber (GER) / G Monfils (FRA)
S Aspelin (SWE) / P Hanley (AUS) vs [WC] F Dancevic (CAN) / A Shamasdin (CAN)
COURT 3 start 12:00 noon
L Mayer (ARG) vs [Q] K Anderson (RSA)
O Dolgopolov (UKR) vs P Petzschner (GER)
J Nieminen (FIN) / R Soderling (SWE) vs J Benneteau (FRA) / M Llodra (FRA)
Also Check Out:
Federer Tests Annacone, Chela Tonight in Toronto; Soderling, Nalbandian On Court
Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic to Play Doubles in Toronto?
ATP Summer Tennis Schedule
Un-Fit Rafael Nadal Withdraws From Toronto
2011 US Open Tennis TV Schedule: ESPN2, CBS, Tennis Channel