Longtime rivals Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal lead the field at the 2015 China Open in Beijing set to begin this week.
Djokovic is a 5-time champion who has never lost at the event (24-0) including a win over Nadal in the 2013 final.
“It’s been a long season, no question about it, a lot of matches played. But this is what I do. This is my life,” Djokovic said. “The support I get here over the years with all the fans,the way they wait for me in front of the hotel and the club is something that I don’t experience really more or less anywhere.
“That’s one of the big reasons why I keep on coming back here and why I like to perform in China.”
In his first match since the US Open, the Serb opens his title defense against Italian qualifier Simone Bolelli.
Nadal, a champion in 2005, is on the other half of the draw. The former No. 1 faces wildcard Di Wu.
“I am working hard .I think I am on the right way to fight again for the things that I get used,” Nadal said.
“Normally the last part of the year have been not easy for me during the years. This year little bit different story because I arrived with less victories. I just try to practice well on the tournaments, try to compete the way that I want to compete.
“For me,I said, ‘OK,the season is not over, but the tournaments that I going to play till the end of the season, I’m going to try my best in every single match’. I going to try to do the things that I believe I need to start stronger next year.”
Nadal could meet 2012 finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarterfinals before second seed and 2014 runner-up Tomas Berdych in the semifinals.
Djokovic’s road could take him through John Isner in the quarters and either David Ferrer or Milos Raonic in the semifinals.
500 ranking points will be awarded to the winner.
MONDAY BEIJING SCHEDULE
NATIONAL TENNIS STADIUM start 12:30 pm
ATP –  J. Tsonga (FRA) vs A. Haider-Maurer (AUT)
Not Before 2:30 pm
WTA –  A. Petkovic (GER) vs E. Bouchard (CAN)
WTA –  B. Bencic (SUI) vs M. Brengle (USA)
Not Before 7:30 pm
ATP – V. Troicki (SRB) vs  M. Raonic (CAN)
Not Before 9:00 pm
WTA – S. Kuznetsova (RUS) vs S. Stephens (USA)
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