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Corona ATP Weekly Slice: Djokovic Headlines Toronto Field

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 sixth and seventh ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments of the season take place in Toronto and Cincinnati this month, led by a star-studded line-up. One of the Big Four (Djokovic, Nadal, Federer, Murray) has won the Rogers Cup title in Canada the past 10 years (since 2004). In Cincinnati, the Big Four have accounted for the past seven titles and eight of the past 10 overall.

Rogers Cup (Toronto, Canada)
The sixth Masters 1000 tournament of the season features 16 of the Top 20 players in the Emirates ATP Rankings, including eight of the Top 10. Leading the way is World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who is playing for the first time since capturing the Wimbledon title on 6 July. This is also his first tournament since his nuptials on 10 July.

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Novak Reprises Role - Three-time Rogers Cup champion Novak Djokovic is the top seed for the fourth straight year in Canada. Djokovic has a 25-4 record in Canada, winning in Montreal twice (2007, ’11) and in Toronto two years ago. Djokovic has won 13 of his past 14 Rogers Cup matches, all as the top seed. His only loss in the past three years came in 2013 when he lost to Rafael Nadal in a third-set tie-break in the semi-finals. This year, Djokovic returned to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on 7 July after his five-set Wimbledon victory over Roger Federer. This will be the 106th week (as of 4 August) he is ranked World No. 1.

Rexall Centre Anniversary - This year marks the 10th anniversary of the 12,500-seat Rexall Centre, which was completed in July 2004 in time for the Rogers Cup that comes to Toronto every two years. In the five previous tournaments at the Rexall Centre, each of the Big Four have won at least one title: Roger Federer in 2004 and ’06, Rafael Nadal in ’08, Andy Murray in ’10 and Djokovic in ’12.

Murray Looks For Jumpstart - Eighth seed and 2009-'10 Rogers Cup winner Andy Murray attempts to turn around his 2014 season. Murray, who dropped to No. 10 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on 7 July (his lowest ranking since being No. 11 in June 2008) after his quarter-final exit at Wimbledon, has not won a title since capturing the crown at the All England Club last year. Murray has a 31-12 match record on the season (15-6 on hard) with his best results coming in the semi-finals at Acapulco and Roland Garros.

Young Ones To Watch – Six of the youngest players in the Top 100 (all 23-and-under) are in the main draw: No. 69 Nick Kyrgios (19), No. 50 Dominic Thiem (20), No. 60 Jack Sock (21), No. 9 Grigor Dimitrov (23), No. 7 Milos Raonic (23) and Jerzy Janowicz (23).

Canadian Success – Last year, Canada advanced to the Davis Cup semi-finals for the first time and Milos Raonic and Vasek Pospisil became the first Canadian duo to finish in the Top 50 of the Emirates ATP Rankings. One year ago, Raonic reached the final in Montreal (l. to Nadal) and Pospisil advanced to the semi-finals (l. to Raonic). This season, the Canadians have continued their winning ways: Raonic has climbed to a career-high No. 7, highlighted by his first Grand Slam semi-final appearance, at Wimbledon, and a quarter-final finish at Roland Garros. Pospisil captured his first Grand Slam doubles crown at Wimbledon (w/Sock). Raonic defeated Pospisil in the Citi Open final on Sunday, the first all-Canadian final on the ATP World Tour.

Ageless Wonder – Veteran doubles specialist Daniel Nestor is making his record 26th straight tournament appearance. The 41-year-old Canadian has a 37-23 match record at Rogers Cup, winning both titles in Toronto, in 2000 (w/Lareau) and ’08 (w/Zimonjic). This season Nestor has won four titles, increasing his total to 85. Nestor has won at least one ATP World Tour title every year since 1994.

Wild Cards – Besides Kyrgios, there are three other wild cards in the main draw: Canadians Frank Dancevic and Peter Polansky, and the youngest American in the Top 100, 21-year-old Jack Sock. Dancevic reached the quarter-finals in 2007 and will be making his 12th Rogers Cup appearance in 13 years (except ’11). Polansky is appearing in his home country tournament for the eighth time in nine years (2-7 record). Sock lost in the second round of qualifying last year and this is the American’s main draw debut. He will be teaming with Pospisil in the doubles draw. They are undefeated (10-0) in their first two tournaments, winning titles at Wimbledon and Atlanta.

Emirates ATP Rankings Movers
The lone teenager in the Top 100 Emirates ATP Rankings, No. 69-ranked Nick Kyrgios, returns to the ATP World Tour as a wild card after his quarter-final run to Wimbledon last month. The 19-year-old Kyrgios, who entered Wimbledon ranked No. 144, became the first teenager to beat a World No. 1 (Nadal) in a Grand Slam tournament since Nadal defeated Federer in the semi-finals at Roland Garros in 2005. The young Aussie fired a career-high 37 aces, the most Nadal has ever faced in his career, in the fourth-round match.

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

Milos Raonic 6 (+1 spot)
Grigor Dimitrov 8 (+1 spot) - career-high
Vasek Pospisil 27 (+9 spots)
Santiago Giraldo 30 (+4 spots) - career-high
Dominic Thiem 44 (+6 spots) - career-high
David Goffin 48 (+30 spots)
Donald Young 50 (+23 spots)
Steve Johnson 54 (14 spots) - career-high

Potential Milestones (as of 4 August)

Toronto - Singles
Ivan Dodig - 94 wins
Marcel Granollers - 146 wins
Ernests Gulbis - 194 wins
Brayden Schnur - 0 wins
Mikhail Youzhny - 449 wins

Toronto - Doubles
Jean-Julien Rojer - 199 wins
Mikhail Youzhny - 149 wins

Birthdays
4 August - Facundo Arguello (22)
7 August - Daniel Gimeno-Traver (29)
7 August - Jan Hajek (31)
8 August - Roger Federer (33)
8 August - Marinko Matosevic (29)

Player To Watch: Roger FedererFederer
No. 2 seed and two-time Rogers Cup champion Roger Federer (2004, '06) makes his return to Canada for the first time since 2011, when he fell to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the third round in Montreal. This is his first visit to Toronto since 2010, when he finished runner-up to Andy Murray. The No. 3-ranked Swiss superstar enters with a 40-8 match record on the season, including a 24-4 mark on hard courts (most wins on ATP World Tour). Federer turns 33 on 8 August.

How To Watch
Watch Toronto coverage 4 August - 10 August. (Territory restrictions apply.) Watch Live Powered by Tennis TV | TV Schedule

WEEK IN REVIEW

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Video of the Week
Kei Nishikori showed off his quick reflexes in defending a Sam Querrey forehand to earn Hot Shot honors at the Citi Open. Watch live matches at http://www.tennistv.com/

In Case You Missed It...

Washington, D.C.: World No. 7 Milos Raonic defeated countryman Vasek Pospisil 6-1, 6-4 to win the Citi Open crown on Sunday, in a high-powered battle of young guns. It was the first final between Canadians on the ATP World Tour in the Open Era.
Raonic: "All in all, [it was] a very good performance and an important moment for me.""

In doubles, Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau maintained their supremacy in ATP World Tour finals, improving to 5-1 as a team with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Sam Groth and Leander Paes at the Citi Open. Read Match Report

Kitzbühel: David Goffin claimed his maiden ATP World Tour title, defeating Austria’s Dominic Thiem 4-6, 6-1, 6-3 in what was the last clay-court match on the ATP World Tour in 2014.
Goffin: "It's a great day for me, to win an ATP [World Tour] 250. It's just an amazing feeling right now.”
More: Goffin First-Time Winner Spotlight

Tidbits
FedererRoger Federer swapped his tennis racquet for a hockey stick on Sunday at the Rexall Centre as the Toronto Maple Leafs took on stars of the ATP World Tour in a hockey game on a transformed centre court. More…
• In commemoration of a Twitter milestone, Roger Federer conducted an impromptu #AskRF session that became the No. 1 worldwide trending topic on Wednesday. Read More...
Andy Murray and coach Amelie Mauresmo took to the foosball table in the Rogers Cup players' lounge on Sunday. Who do you think was winning this exchange? Watch...
• Also in the Toronto players' lounge, Stan Wawrinka gave his coach Magnus Norman a workout on the ping pong table. Watch...
Milos Raonic was invited to the Embassy of Canada in Washington D.C. to receive a personal tour by Ambassador Gary Doer. Read More...
• South African player Rik De Voest retired from the ATP World Tour after career spanning 15 years. He played his last tournament at the Vancouver Challenger. Read Tribute...
• Ahead of the Rogers Cup, Novak Djokovic took some time to support his friend Niall Horan, of the band One Direction, as the quintet performed in Toronto on Friday evening. More…
Tomas Berdych and Kei Nishikori met Manchester United stars in Washington D.C., and Philipp Kohlschreiber rode a bicycle up Kitzbühel's world famous mountain, the Hahnenkamm. Read ATP Stars Recap…
Steve Johnson talks to ATPWorldTour.com about the last time he surfed, asked for an autograph and other memorable moments. Read 'Last Time…'

Photo Galleries: Washington D.C. | Kitzbühel


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