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Corona ATP Weekly Slice: Berdych, Raonic Headline Clay Contests

Corona ATP Slice

Tap into the essentials of the week ahead and re-live the highlights of the past week with Corona ATP Weekly Slice, 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?
The ATP World Tour European clay-court circuit heads into its third week with stops in Germany and Portugal. Two players in the Top 10, No. 6 Tomas Berdych and No. 9 Milos Raonic, both compete in Oeiras. In Munich, Fabio Fognini is the top seed.

BMW Open by FWU AG (Munich)
The first of five German tournaments on the ATP World Tour calendar takes place at Munich’s Iphitos Tennis Club. The event's 40th edition includes a field with four former champions: Haas (2013), Kohlschreiber (2012, ‘07), Mikhail Youzhny (2010) and Nikolay Davydenko (2011, ’04). The seeds, in order: Fognini, Haas, Youzhny, Gael Monfils, Kohlschreiber, Feliciano Lopez, Andreas Seppi and Ivan Dodig.

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Fabio Top Seed – The 26-year-old Italian is making his tournament debut. This is the third time Fognini has entered an ATP World Tour event as the top seed. In February, he captured the Vina del Mar title (d. L. Mayer) while seeded first, but made a second-round exit in St. Petersburg in 2013 (l. to Przysiezny) as the headliner. The No. 1 Italian led his country to the 2014 Davis Cup semi-finals by winning all four of his singles rubbers against Argentina and Great Britain.

No. 1 Junior Leads Wild Cards – German Alexander Zverev, the World No. 1 junior, accepted a wild card into Munich. The reigning Australian Open junior champion, who turned 17 years old on 20 April, lost in the first round in his only ATP World Tour main draw appearance, in Hamburg 2013 (l. to Bautista-Agut). Other wild cards in the field are Germans Dustin Brown, ranked a career-high No. 87, and Peter Gojowczyk.

Portugal Open (Oeiras)
The 25th edition of the Portugal Open is headlined by World No. 6 Tomas Berdych and No. 9 Milos Raonic. Spaniard Albert Montanes, the lone former champion in the field, won back-to-back titles in 2009-'10. Other Oeiras seeds drawn were No. 3 Marcel Granollers, No. 4 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, No. 5 Dmitry Tursunov, No. 6 Joao Sousa, No. 7 Teymuraz Gabashvili and No. 8 Mikhail Kukushkin.

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Tomas Top Seed – This is the eighth time in Berdych’s career he is the top seed in an ATP World Tour tournament and the first since 2013 Bangkok, where he finished runner-up to Raonic. In his only previous Oeiras outing, in 2005, Berdych made a first-round exit (l. to Tabara).

Milos On The Move – Raonic, the youngest player in the Top 10 Emirates ATP Rankings at 23 years old, is making his second attempt at an Oeiras trophy. In 2011, the Canadian retired in the semi-finals against Fernando Verdasco. Raonic enters with a 10-4 match record on the season, having reached the quarter-finals of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments in Indian Wells, Miami and Monte-Carlo. He owns five ATP World Tour titles, the most of any player born in the 1990s.

Local Title Hopes – Sousa is Portugal's highest ranked player in the history of the Emirates ATP Rankings (No. 40), and is the the first Portuguese to win an ATP World Tour title (Kuala Lumpur 2013). The 25 year old is 4-3 lifetime at his home country tournament and reached the quarter-finals in 2012, his most recent appearance. Not including qualifiers, two other Portuguese players – wild cards Gastao Elias and Rui Machado – are also in the main draw.

Potential Milestones (Career match wins as of 28 April 2014)

Munich – Singles
Alejandro Falla - 98 wins

Munich – Doubles
Julian Knowle - 347 wins

Emirates ATP Rankings Movers
Kei Nishikori 12 (+5 spots)
Grigor Dimitrov 14 (+2 spots) - career high
Gael Monfils 23 (+1 spot)
Nicolas Almagro 24 (-4 spots)
Robin Haase 43 (+7 spots)
Santiago Giraldo 47 (+18 spots)
Lukas Rosol 51 (-8 spots)
Dominic Thiem 70 (+10 spots) - career high
Jack Sock 74 (+14 spots) - career high
Nick Kyrgios 152 (+19 spots) - career high

Birthdays
1 May – Tommy Robredo (32)
1 May – Michael Russell (36)

Player To Watch: Tommy Haas Haas
German No. 1 and defending champion Tommy Haas has compiled an 18-9 record in Munich. The 36 year old, who made his tournament debut in 1998, finished runner-up in 2000 and reached the semi-finals in 2005 and '12. The Hamburg native is playing his first event since Indian Wells, where he lost in the fourth round to Roger Federer. He later withdrew from Miami due to a right shoulder injury.

How To Watch
Watch coverage of the BMW Open by FWU AG and the Portugal Open 2-4 May. (Territory restrictions apply.)
Watch Live Powered by Tennis TV | TV Schedule

WEEK IN REVIEW

Twitter Top Tweets

@keinishikori (Kei Nishikori)
Not sure what was easier...winning the trophy or lifting it over my head:) http://fb.me/26AVqEXXR

@GrigorDimitrov (Grigor Dimitrov)
Great week in Romania! Thanks for the fantastic support,happy with the 3rd title:) pic.twitter.com/N7rxquk8Il

@BBakesTennis (Brian Baker)
The tennis crew at the #eastereggroll. @BradleyKlahn trying to show us up with his wardrobe! pic.twitter.com/oAsMw7YHWa

@robin_haase (Robin Haase)
Good news: The countdown begins. My new website is almost done!

@DjokerNole (Novak Djokovic)
Hello my friends! I am in good hands, recovering and enjoying beautiful Athens #Acropolis #NoleFam @JelenaRisticNDF pic.twitter.com/KD9LwgPcJ0

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Video of the Week
Deep behind the baseline, Nicolas Almagro strikes a sensational winner against Rafael Nadal in the Barcelona quarter-finals.

In Case You Missed It...

Barcelona: Kei Nishikori lifted his first clay-court trophy after defeating Santiago Giraldo 6-2, 6-2 in the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell final on Sunday. Earlier in the tournament, Nicolas Almagro dealt eight-time champion Rafael Nadal his first Barcelona loss in 11 years. In doubles, Jesse Huta Galung and Stephane Robert toppled two-time former champions Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic 6-3, 6-3 for their first team title.
Nishikori: "My next goal is to get to the Top 10.”

Bucharest: Grigor Dimitrov earned his third ATP World Tour title with a 7-6(2), 6-1 victory over Lukas Rosol in the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy final. Romanian Horia Tecau teamed with Jean-Julien Rojer to beat 2006 champions Mariusz Fyrstenberg and Marcin Matkowski 6-4, 6-4 in the doubles title match, giving Tecau his third Bucharest crown.
Dimitrov: “I have worked really hard to start winning titles. I have put in enough effort, time and sacrifices to get here.”

Tidbits
Nadal• Before playing at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell, Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer played tennis at the historic Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona’s opera house on La Rambla, founded in 1847. More...
• World No. 2 Novak Djokovic and his fiancée, Jelena Ristic, announced Thursday on Facebook and Twitter that they are expecting their first child. More...
• Djokovic is targeting his return to tennis at the Mutua Madrid Open (4-11 May) as he continues to battle for the No. 1 position in the Emirates ATP Rankings. More...
Andy Murray was awarded the freedom of Stirling and presented with an honorary degree by the University of Stirling. More...
Juan Carlos Ferrero is bringing his tennis team to China by opening a new academy, the Grand Gemdale-Ferrero International Tennis Academy in Shenzhen. More...
Tommy Robredo, a winner of 12 ATP World Tour titles, tells ATPWorldTour.com the last time… More...
• Ahead of the Portugal Open, former World No. 20 and seven-time ATP World Tour titlist Dmitry Tursunov enjoyed a visit to Casal da Manteiga, a local winery in Oeiras. More...

Photo Gallery: Barcelona | Bucharest


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