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Rome Draw: Returning Finalists Nadal & Djokovic In Similar Half

One 12 months after Rafael Nadal defeated Novak Djokovic in a three-set remaining on the 2021 Internazionali BNL d’Italia, the 2 most profitable gamers in ATP Masters 1000 historical past have been drawn in the identical half for subsequent week’s occasion.

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5-time champion Djokovic, who can nonetheless add to his document 37 ATP Masters 1000 titles in Madrid, is the highest seed in Rome. He may face Aslan Karatsev in his opening match, the place the Serbian can be trying to avenge a semi-final loss on the clay of Belgrade final 12 months. One of many extra intriguing opening-round matches may yield Djokovic’s third-round opponent: 14th seed Reilly Opelka takes on Stan Wawrinka, who will probably be competing in his second ATP Tour match of the season as he returns from a foot damage.

Eighth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime, a quarter-finalist in Madrid, is the next-highest seed in Djokovic’s quarter. The Canadian may face Monte Carlo finalist Alejandro Davidovich Fokina within the second spherical and 2020 Rome finalist Diego Schwartzman within the third spherical.

Nadal, seeded third, is a 36-time ATP Masters 1000 champ. His 10 Rome titles are his most at any occasion at that degree exterior of his 11 in Monte Carlo. The 35-year-old will probably be competing in his second occasion after a six-week damage layoff as he continues his return from a rib fracture. The Spaniard may open in opposition to John Isner, with fifth seed Casper Ruud — a former Rome semi-finalist who returns after lacking out on the 2021 occasion — a possible quarter-final opponent.

Alexander Zverev leads the draw’s backside half because the second seed, with the 2017 Rome champion set to open play in opposition to a qualifier within the second spherical. Madrid semi-finalist Carlos Alcaraz looms as a possible quarter-final opponent, with the seventh-seeded Spaniard probably dealing with a tough opening match in opposition to Cristian Garin.

Fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas and Grigor Dimitrov are in line to satisfy for the third time in as many occasions following wins for the Greek in Barcelona and Madrid. Dimitrov might want to get previous a qualifier to arrange that encounter.

Andrey Rublev and Jannik Sinner are additionally in Tsitsipas’ quarter, as is Dominic Thiem, who will search the primary victory of his return from a right-wrist damage in opposition to Fabio Fognini. The winner there may face tenth seed Sinner within the second spherical.

The 2022 Internazionali BNL d’Italia will probably be performed from 8-15 Could on the Foro Italico in Rome. It’s the fifth of the 9 ATP Masters 1000 occasions on the 2022 calendar, and the third and remaining clay-court match at that degree.

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