Roger Federer makes his post-Australian return at his second home in Dubai this upcoming week. Federer has won the event seven times, but this year he’ll look for an 8th which would give him 100 career titles.
Federer is seeded second behind No. 1 Kei Nishikori. Seeded third is Marin Cilic and No. 4 is Khachanov.
Federer opens against German veteran Philipp Kohlschreiber Monday and would face either former finalist Fernando Verdasco or Thomas Fabbiano in the second round.
“It’s actually been a nice break away from it all,” Federer said of his recent break. “I went on vacation after the Australian Open with the family. After that, I went to practice. Important was not to get hurt because I was training in Switzerland. It was cold. We had snow and everything. I’m happy I got through that one well. Actually I’m feeling good now. Fitness has been going well, tennis has been going well. I’ve been here a few days. I feel really well prepared.”
The top seeded Nishikori battles Benoit Paire and Cilic meets Gael Monfils.
The last four years has seen four different champions and eight different finalists at the event, with Roberto Bautista Agut taking the crown last year over Lucas Pouille.
Projected quarterfinal match-ups: 1 Nishikori v 5 Tsitsipas, 3 Cilic v 8 Medvedev, 6 Coric v 7 Khachanov, 7 Raonic v 2 Federer.
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