It’s not the official first ball, but pro tennis action begins Thursday in the Middle East, home of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi.
The money-rich event is loaded again with star power. Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Gael Monfils, David Ferrer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga will compete for a first place check of $250,000.
The knock out tournament begins tomorrow with Ferrer against Tsonga at 3pm (6am ET) followed by Djokovic and Monfils at 5pm (8am ET).
Federer and Nadal, who have byes, will be on site signing autographs and taking part in clinics. Federer and Ferrer will host a free clinic for kids at 11am. Nadal will be available for autographs at 2pm followed by Federer.
“I feel my game is in really good shape and the desire to train hard remains,” Federer told the GulfNews earlier this week. “Everything is in a good place and to continue the winning streak in Abu Dhabi would be a good start to the new season.”
“Each year the support I receive is amazing and appreciated. The fans in Abu Dhabi give me a great welcome and it’s part of the reason I come back. It would be nice to get an early win for the fans but also to see where my game is ahead of the Australian Open,” Federer added.
On Friday, Federer will play the Djokovic-Monfils winner at 3pm. Nadal will play his semifinal against the Ferrer-Tsonga victor at 5pm.
The Saturday final is set for 5pm local time. For more visit the Abu Dhabi website.
If I find any live streaming options or TV coverage I will post here. Tennis Channel will show a replay of the event on Monday.
3pm Ferrer v. Tsonga
5pm Djokovic v. Monfils
3pm Federer v. Djokovic/Monfils
5pm Nadal v. Ferrer/Tsonga
3pm Third Place Match (semifinal losers)
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