The players are still brushing the red clay from their shoes, but the grass court season begins immediately and in earnest (and with Ernest Gulbis) beginning today.
Only qualifiers and lower-ranked players will see the court today in Halle, Germany at the Gerry Weber Open, but the seeds are stacked with French Open champ Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Milos Raonic and Tommy Haas among the stars.
The men’s Aegon Championships in London are equally stacked with seeds including Stan Wawrinka at No. 1, Tomas Berdych, Andy Murray Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and Gulbis others.
The 56-player London draw has no lack of early-round matches to watch for including (1) Wawrinka after a bye likely vs. (WC) Marcos Baghdatis, (14) Jerem Chardy vs. Sam Querrey, (5) Tsonga after a bye likely vs. comer Dominik Thiem, and (12) Dmitry Tursunov vs. Dutchman Igor Sijsling. Also watch out for unseeded Lleyton Hewitt, the former No. 1 and Wimbledon champion.
The women only have one event this week, the AEGON Classic in Birmingham where, like the grass court seasons on the WTA tour every year, the stars fail to come out until Wimbledon.
No Top 10 players are entered in Birmingham, but the seeds contain some names with former No. 1 Ana Ivanovic, Slam winner Sam Stosur, and rising players Madison Keys, Monica Puig, Caroline Garcia and Alison Riske.
Who will benefit from fast starts on the men’s and women’s sides?
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