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Corona ATP Weekly Slice: Berdych Goes To Washington

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

The seventh ATP World Tour 500-level tournament of the season and the final clay-court event on the ATP World Tour highlight the 31st week of tennis in 2014. In Washington, two of the Top 10 in the Emirates ATP Rankings headline the 48-player field: No. 5 Tomas Berdych and No. 7 Milos Raonic. Overall six of the Top 20 players are in the draw. This is also the second of five tournaments in the Emirates Airline US Open Series. In Kitzbühel, top German Philipp Kohlschreiber headlines the list of seeds.

Citi Open (Washington D.C., U.S.A.)
The field at the only ATP World Tour 500-level tournament in North America includes two former champions: Radek Stepanek (2011) and former World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt (2004). Tomas Berdych leads the list of seeds, followed by Milos Raonic, Kei Nishikori, John Isner, Richard Gasquet, Kevin Anderson and Feliciano Lopez. Isner, fresh from his successful title defence in Atlanta, is a two-time former finalist (2007, ’13).

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Milos Returns - One of the youngest players in the Top 10 Emirates ATP Rankings, No. 7 Milos Raonic, is playing in his first tournament since reaching the Wimbledon semi-finals earlier this month. Raonic, 23, is attempting to qualify for the season-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London for the first time. The Canadian is currently 11th in the Emirates ATP Race to London standings. Another player looking to make his maiden visit to the season finale is Kei Nishikori, who is ninth in the Race. In May, Nishikori became the first Japanese man to break into the Top 10.

Teenage Debut - Local wild card 16-year-old Francis Tiafoe, from nearby College Park, is making his ATP World Tour main draw debut. Tiafoe is currently the No. 6-ranked junior in the world. Tiafoe is the youngest player to appear in the Washington draw since Michael Chang (16) in 1988.

Bryan Closing In On Century Mark - The top doubles team of Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan is closing in on 100 ATP World Tour titles. They currently have 98 titles together (Mike has 100 overall, Bob 98). The American twins have captured the Washington title three times (2005-'07) and reached the final on two other occasions (2001-'02). This is their first visit to the William H. G. Fitzgerald Tennis Center since 2011. They have a 5-3 record in finals this season, winning five straight titles (Delray Beach, Indian Wells, Miami, Houston and Monte-Carlo). They are coming off a five-set final loss at Wimbledon to Pospisil/Sock.

bet-at-home Cup Kitzbühel (Kitzbühel, Austria)
The final clay-court tournament of the season and one of two Austrian events (Vienna) on the ATP World Tour takes place at the picturesque Kitzbühel Tennis Club. Leading the way is top seed and No. 1 German Philipp Kohlschreiber, who was runner-up two years ago. The second seed is defending champion Marcel Granollers, followed by Lukas Rosol, Andreas Seppi, top Austrian Dominic Thiem, two-time champion Robin Haase, Jarkko Nieminen and Pablo Carreno Busta. The other former champion in the field is 2007 winner Juan Monaco.

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German Top Seed – For the second year in a row, Philipp Kohlschreiber is the top seed at this final clay-court event of the season, where he has an 8-6 record. This season the 30-year-old German has compiled a 29-17 match record (15-8 on clay), winning his fifth ATP World Tour title in Duesseldorf (d. Karlovic) in May.

Reigning Champ – The defending champion is second seed Marcel Granollers, who defeated Juan Monaco in last year’s final. The 28-year-old Spaniard comes in with a 14-20 match record on the season (10-14 on clay), including a runner-up finish in Casablanca. Granollers has a 7-1 record in Kitzbühel and also reached the quarter-finals in 2011.

Young Austrian In Top 50 – The No. 1 Austrian, Dominic Thiem, advanced to his first ATP World Tour quarter-final in Kitzbühel last year while ranked No. 268 in the world. Last week, the 20-year-old Austrian broke into the Top 50 of the Emirates ATP Rankings (No. 47), becoming the youngest player in that elite group.

One To Watch – Sixth seed and two-time champion Robin Haase has a 12-1 record in Kitzbühel. The top Dutchman won back-to-back titles in 2011-'12 and last year reached the semi-finals (l. to eventual champion Granollers).

Austrians In The Draw – There are four Austrians in the main draw, led by Thiem and the country’s No. 2 player Jurgen Melzer. The others are No. 109 Andreas Haider-Maurer and his first-round opponent, wild card Gerald Melzer, who has broken into the Top 150 for the first time (No. 148). The Melzer brothers are teaming together in the doubles draw.

Emirates ATP Rankings Movers
German 17-year-old wild card Alexander Zverev is playing in his third straight ATP World Tour tournament, in Kitzbühel, after a first-round exit in Umag last week. In his hometown of Hamburg on 19 July, Zverev advanced to his first ATP World Tour semi-final (l. to Ferrer), an effort that pushed him into the Top 200 of the Emirates ATP Rankings. Last year’s World No. 1 junior has climbed over 500 ranking positions since 30 June, when he was No. 665. He is the first 17 year old to rank in the Top 200 since Marin Cilic on 14 August 2006 (No. 197).

Below is a list of other players making moves this week:

Marin Cilic 18 (+4 spots)
Pablo Cuevas 40 (+20 spots) - career-high
Pablo Carreno Busta 55 (+2 spots) - career-high
Jack Sock 60 (+12 spots) - career-high
Alexander Zverev 159 (+2 spots) - career-high
Borna Coric 194 (+36 spots) - career-high

Potential Milestones (as of 28 July)

Washington - Singles
Blaz Kavcic - 48 wins
Milos Raonic - 149 wins
Donald Young - 49 wins

Washington - Doubles
Jean-Julien Rojer - 195 wins

Kitzbühel - Singles
Marcel Granollers - 145 wins
Juan Monaco - 295 wins

Kitzbühel - Doubles
Martin Emmrich - 46 wins

Player To Watch: Tomas BerdychIsner
Wild card Tomas Berdych is making his fourth appearance (7-3 record) at the Citi Open and the first since 2010 when he reached the quarter-finals. The Czech reached his best result in his tournament debut in 2005, making a run into the semi-finals. This is the first time since May in Oeiras the World No. 5 is the top seed. This season, the 28 year old won his ninth ATP World Tour title in Rotterdam (d. Cilic). He also was runner-up in Dubai and Oeiras.

How To Watch
Watch Washington coverage 28 July - 3 August. (Territory restrictions apply.) Watch Live Powered by Tennis TV | TV Schedule

WEEK IN REVIEW

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Video of the Week
World No. 7 Milos Raonic returned home to Toronto to throw the opening pitch at the Blue Jays vs. Red Sox baseball game at the Rogers Centre. It wasn’t the classic opening throw, with Raonic instead serving a tennis ball to Mark Buehrle, a pitcher, who wore a catcher's mask to stay safe. Read More

In Case You Missed It...

Atlanta: John Isner retained his BB&T Atlanta Open crown with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Israel’s Dudi Sela in Atlantic Station.
Isner: "The field is so tough at this event. I'm so happy to win this."
More: Isner To Play Entire Emirate Airlines US Open Series

In doubles, top seeds Vasek Pospisil and Jack Sock remained undefeated after claiming the Atlanta title over Americans Steve Johnson and Sam Querrey 6-3, 5-7, 10-5 on Sunday. They stay on track in their bid to qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London this November. More

Gstaad: Pablo Andujar captured his third ATP World Tour title - and his first trophy in more than two years - by defeating No. 105-ranked Juan Monaco 6-3, 7-5 in the final.
Andujar: "I have worked a lot and it is amazing to win a trophy."

Umag: Pablo Cuevas claimed his second ATP World Tour title in three weeks, denying Tommy Robredo a successful title defence in Umag 6-3, 6-4 in Sunday's final.
Cuevas: "I'm really happy. I never expected to win two tournaments in a row"

Tidbits
FedererRoger Federer and golfer Tiger Woods are the most financially valuable athletes on earth. Forbes Magazine reports that in 2013, Federer and Woods each earned $46 million with their names. More…
Juan Martin del Potro, continuing his comeback from left wrist surgery, practised his two-handed backhand for the first time this week. Read More & Watch...
Jack Sock played with a Hawk in Atlanta while Robin Haase received a goat in Gstaad. Read all of the off-court happenings in this week's ATP World Tour Stars Recap. More...
• Serbian young gun Dusan Lajovic reached a career-high in the Emirates ATP Rankings after recent success on the court. As one of the Stars of Tomorrow, Lajovic talks with ATPWorldTour.com about his immediate goals and budding relationship with countryman Novak Djokovic. Read Profile...
• University students in Bundoora, Australia found themselves spending time with Nick Kyrgios after receiving a surprise visit from the Wimbledon sensation. Watch…
Andy Murray conducted a light-hearted Facebook Q&A for his fans on Thursday. More…
Donald Young recalls his first encounters with his tennis idols, why he love to play tennis and looks back on his strangest match. Read Biofile...
Juan Monaco paid a visit to the ‘cheese cathedral’ in Gstaad, following his first-round win at the Crédit Agricole Suisse Open Gstaad. More…

Photo Galleries: Atlanta | Gstaad | Umag


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