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Weekly Snapshot: Nadal Returns To Home Soil

Nadal© AFP/Getty ImagesRafael Nadal looks to back up his Monte-Carlo triumph in Barcelona for the seventh time.

Tap into the essentials of the week ahead and re-live the highlights of the past week with our Weekly Snapshot, as we serve up an executive summary of what every fan should know, along with a look at the best in social media.

LOOKING AHEAD

Who’s Playing This Week?
There is one ATP World Tour 500 event in Barcelona and one ATP World Tour 250 event in Bucharest.

Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell: Fresh off his eighth consecutive Monte-Carlo triumph, defending champion Rafael Nadal headlines the field. The World No. 2 has won the event the past six times he has entered, riding a 29-match win streak. He is joined by fourth-ranked Andy Murray, three-time finalist David Ferrer and 2010 champion Fernando Verdasco.
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BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy: Two-time titlist Gilles Simon is the top seed, returning to the event for the first time since retaining the title in 2008. Reigning champion Florian Mayer bids to defend his first ATP World Tour title and is seeded second. Viktor Troicki and Marcos Baghdatis will make their event debuts.
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Potential Milestones (Career match wins as of 23 April, 2012)
Bucharest – Doubles
Ross Hutchins – 99 wins

Rankings Movers
Juan Martin del Potro 9 (+1 spot)
Mardy Fish 10 (-1 spot)
John Isner 11 (-2 spots)
Gilles Simon 12 (+3 spots)
Julien Benneteau 27 (+4 spots)
Robin Haase 45 (+10 spots)
Mikhail Kukushkin 55 (+13 spots)
Ivan Dodig 77 (-20 spots)
Sam Querrey 80 (+18 spots)

Birthdays
23 April – Alex Bogomolov Jr. (29)
23 April – Eduardo Schwank (26)
25 April – Juan Sebastian Cabal (26)
26 April – John Isner (27)
27 April – Horacio Zeballos (27)
29 April – Julian Knowle (38)
29 April – Bob Bryan (34)
29 April – Mike Bryan (34)

Player To Watch: Gilles Simon
SimonThe World No. 12 is coming off a run to the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters semi-finals, where he defeated Top 10 players Janko Tipsarevic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga en route to his first final four showing at an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 clay-court event.

Simon is playing in Bucharest this week, where he boasts an 11-1 record, highlighted by back-to-back titles in 2007-2008. Four of his nine trophies have come on clay, including his latest final victory in Hamburg last year.

Making A Statement Early
The past six times Rafael Nadal has attempted to back up his Monte-Carlo triumph with a title on home soil in Barcelona, he has succeeded. See who he’s defeated to achieve the feat in the chart below...

YearMonte-Carlo FinalBarcelona Final
2005 d. Coria 6-3, 6-1, 0-6, 7-5 d. Ferrero 6-1, 7-6(4), 6-3
2006 d. Federer 6-2, 6-7(2), 6-3, 7-6(5) d. Robredo 6-4, 6-4, 6-0
2007 d. Federer 6-4, 6-4  d. Canas 6-3, 6-4
2008 d. Federer 7-5, 7-5  d. Ferrer 6-1, 4-6, 6-1
2009 d. Djokovic 6-3, 2-6, 6-1 d. Ferrer 6-2, 7-5
2011 d. Ferrer 6-4, 7-5 d. Ferrer 6-2, 6-4

How To Watch
Follow all of the action from Bucharest (Blacked out in Romania, USA and Russia) beginning 23 April and from Barcelona starting 26 April.
Watch Live | TV Schedule


WEEK IN REVIEW

Twitter Top Player Tweets

@Maheshbhupathi (Mahesh Bhupathi) ‏
8 titles in a row for Rafa in MC, surely they have to consider naming that centre court after him...that record will stand forever!!!

@JohnIsner (John Isner) ‏
Suggestions please for how I should pay back james blake for doing this. http://t.co/h6dwJWAg

@DjokerNole (Novak Djokovic) ‏
Had a lot of fun on the player' party.It's nice to have a laugh with friends and colleagues. Tomorrow - back to business! See u!

@stanwawrinka (Stanislas Wawrinka) ‏
Great win last night vs Almagro 63 63... One of my best match on clay!! Pic from yesterday night on my way back... http://t.co/ctSnASTj

@kevinanderson18 (Kevin Anderson)
What do you think of the seat I had today flying from Monte Carlo to Barcelona? http://t.co/Pp2wetiN

Most Popular Facebook Post on Facebook.com/ATPWorldTour

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Fan-tastic Feedback
In response to a gruelling rally between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s Monte-Carlo Hot Shot video, these user comments stood out.
gd432: caution: high level tennis!

7ussam2007: The King of clay is back to his throne....Bow down to the king

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Video Of The Week
Join Rafael Nadal in a behind-the-scenes video of the Spaniard's media blitz following his eighth successive Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters triumph on Sunday.

 

In Case You Missed It…
Monte Carlo:
World No. 2 Rafael Nadal dismissed top-ranked Novak Djokovic 6-3, 6-1 to win a record 20th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title, and ended a seven-match final losing streak to the Serbian.
Nadal: “My Level Of Tennis Was High” | Nadal Masters 1000 Tribute

Tidbits
Novak Djokovic was named among TIME Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential people.
See who the Serbian placed ahead of!

Photo Galleries
Monte-Carlo


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