An ATP 500 that looks like Masters 1000. Just that. The Vienna tournament can savor its extraordinary set for a meeting of this magnitude. Without the usual competition from Basel, the other 500 contested at the end of October in “normal” years, the Austrian capital is the rallying point for the top players on the circuit this week. Better, with the freezing of ATP points, Novak Djokovic, assured of keeping the 1000 units of his victory at Bercy last year, had more interest in playing Vienna than Paris. So he too will be part of the party.
After his heavy defeat in the Roland-Garros final against Rafael Nadal two weeks ago, the world number one will try to resume his march forward in order to solidify his place at the top of the hierarchy. But these points will have to be paid dearly, because the competition will be multiple for the Serbian. Dominic Thiem, defending champion, did not want to miss the possibility of a double at home; Stefanos Tsitsipas, Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev and Diego Schwartzman, six of the Top 10 in total, are also present.
Dominic Thiem, sacred in Vienna – 10/27/2019
Credit: Getty Images
Monfils – Entrance carreno
If we add Gaël Monfils (11th) and Denis Shapovalov (12th), the eight seeds in the table are therefore among the twelve best players in the world. 18 Top 30 players will populate the table. It is extremely rare, in an ATP 500, that the 15th in the world, in this case Pablo Carreno Busta, is not even seeded. The Spaniard will face Gaël Monfils from the first round for a duel between members of the Top 15. There too, a poster not common from the outset in a 500.
On paper, this will not be the only match of this 1st round to be worth the detour. Jannik Sinner will face Casper Ruud. Daniil Medvedev will be opposed to Alex De Minaur, titled in Antwerp this Sunday. Also note a Thiem – Nishikori or a Khachanov – Dimitrov. Novak Djokovic will cross swords with his compatriot Filip Krajinovic, which made him complain: “We are three Serbs in the picture and we have to fall against each other, it’s really bad luck.”
If successful, Djokovic, winner in Vienna in … 2007 for what was to date his last participation, could then find Borna Coric or Taylor Fritz on his way, then Diego Schwartzman in the quarter-finals and Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semi-finals . But Dominic Thiem’s painting appears at least as undermined with, after Nishikori, a possible Wawrinka – Rublev (or Sinner) – Medvedev sequence on the way to the final. So much for the theory. In practice, everyone will benefit from starting this tournament in turbo mode. diesels will not survive long …
1. Novak Djokovic (Ser) – Filip Krajinovic (Ser)
Borna Coric (Cro) – Taylor Fritz (EU)
Hubert Hurkacz (Pol) – Qualified
6. Diego Schwartzman (Arg) – Dusan Lajovic (Ser)
3. Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece) – Jan-Lennard Struff (All)
Grigor Dimitrov (Bul) – Karen Khachanov (Rus)
Daniel Evans (GB) – Qualified
8. Denis Shapovalov (Rus) – Yuri Rodionov (Out, WC)
7. Gaël Monfils (Fra) – Pablo Carreno Busta (Esp)
Kevin Anderson (Afs) – Dennis Novak (Aut, WC)
Félix Auger-Aliassime (Can) – Qualified
4. Daniil Medvedev (Rus) – Alex De Minaur (Birds)
5. Andrey Rublev (Rus) – Qualified
Jannik Sinner (WC) – Casper Ruud (Nor)
Stan Wawrinka (Sui) – Christian Garin (Chi)
2. Dominic Thiem (Aut) –Kei Nishikori (Jap)