Nadal, Big Boys in Action at Beijing, Tokyo: ATP Previews
Seeds: Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Robin Soderling, Nikolay Davydenko, Tomas Berdych, Fernando Verdasco, Mikhail Youzhny, David Ferrer
Floaters: Mardy Fish, Janko Tipsarevic, Sam Querrey, (WC) John Isner, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Tommy Robredo, Ivan Ljubicic, Marcos Baghdatis, (Q) Paul-Henri Mathieu
Notes: Lots of dangerous floaters in Beijing, with first-round matches of interest including Fish vs. Tipsarevic (winner to face (1) Djokovic), (6) Verdasco vs. Kohlschreiber (winner to face (WC) Isner), (3) Soderling vs. Robredo, (7) Youzhny vs. Ljubicic, and (2) Murray facing a qualifying-tested Mathieu; Djokovic beat Marin Cilic in the 2009 final; Murray and Berdych are making their debuts in Beijing; seven of the Top 10 players are in Beijing; Baghdatis won the title in 2006; the Bryan brothers, 4-0 at the event, are the top seeds, with their nemesis’ Nestor/Zimonjic at No. 2.
Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships
Seeds: Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Jurgen “Tuna” Melzer, Gael “Force” Monfils, Feliciano “F-Lo” Lopez, “The Importance of Being” Ernests Gulbis, Michael Llodra
Floaters: Richard Gasquet, Dmitry Tursunov, Juan Monaco, (WC) Kei Nishikori, Juan Martin Del Potro, Radek “The Worm” Stepanek, Jarkko Nieminen
Notes: Del Potro in second tournament back after injury layoff, hoping to improve after first-round loss last week; the event is the longest-running ATP World Tour tennis tournament in Asia, first held in 1973; Nadal looking to rebound from shocker loss last week to Guillermo “G-Lo” Garcia-Lopez, who opens against (Q) Rajeev Ram; other openers of interest are (7) Gulbis vs. Tursunov (winner to face Gasquet), (4) Tuna Melzer vs. Monaco (winning to face Viktor Troicki or (WC) Nishikori), (6) F-Lo vs. Del Potro, and (3) Tsonga vs. Nieminen; Roddick looking at QF meeting with the Euro-Roddick Monfils; Tsonga, the 2009 champion, is returning from a lengthy time off due to a knee injury; Nadal is making his debut at the event.
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