With a loaded line-up featuring 9 of the Top 10, the ATP Cup opens play Tuesday in Melbourne.
The Top 4 players in the world will all be in action in this 12-team, 5-day sprint.
The first of three round-robin days will be highlighted by Novak Djokovic and his defending champion Serbia team taking on Canada and Denis Shapovalov.
Djokovic leads Shapovalov 5-0 including a tough 3-set final set breaker win at this event last year.
The 8-time Australian Open champion is happy to return to the grounds.
“It does feel like a home for me in Australia, in Melbourne, particularly in Rod Laver. That is by far my most successful tennis court in my career,” Djokovic said. “Each year that I come back to the court, it feels even better. The more you win on the court, the more confident you feel coming back to it.”
Also, Rafael Nadal opens his 2021 season against recent Antalya winner Alex De Minaur.
“He’s young, he’s improving every year. He has lot of things amazing,” Nadal said of his opponent. “I think going to be a tough battle for all of us playing against a great team like Australia.”
Dominic Thiem takes on Matteo Berrettini and Daniil Medvedev meets Diego Schwartzman.
“Of course, I will try to repeat the success of 2020, and also 2019,” Thiem said.
“There were amazing years. But there’s never a guarantee for that.
“I mean, in a Grand Slam tournament or ATP Cup, all the big tournaments, the whole draw is super strong, so never a guarantee to go deep or to win a title.
“I’ll try everything to do it. I had, again, quite a good preparation. So I’ll try to have a good start at the ATP Cup, then also in the Australian Open.”
The event is being played on the grounds of the Australian Open with the top names playing on Rod Laver Arena.
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