Djokovic Top Seed In Montreal, Raonic Eyes Milestone Win
Stars Aligned in Montreal – The sixth ATP World Tour Masters 1000-level tournament of the season, the Rogers Cup, features 23 of the Top 25 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 his third Wimbledon title on 12 July. Other Top Eight seeds include: No. 2 Andy Murray, No. 3 Stan Wawrinka, No. 4 Kei Nishikori, No. 5 Tomas Berdych, No. 6 Marin Cilic, No. 7 Rafael Nadal and No. 8 Milos Raonic.
• Milos Eyes 200th Win – Canadian No. 1 and 2013 Rogers Cup finalist Raonic is attempting to win his 200th career ATP World Tour-level match. Raonic has a 199-98 career match record. He is playing in his third tournament (Queen’s-QF, Wimbledon-3R) since undergoing right foot surgery on May 13. Raonic, who reached a career-high No. 4 on 11, is ranked No. 10. His best result came in the opening week of the season in Brisbane where he lost to Federer in the final. He is 25-11 on the season (17-7 on hard).
• Former Champions in Field -There are four former champions accounting for nine of the last 10 titles in the field. No. 10 seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is the reigning champion. The other former winners are: Nadal (2005, 2008, 2013), Djokovic (2007, 2011-12) and Murray (2009-10).
• Novak Top Seed Again - World No. 1 and three-time Rogers Cup champion Novak Djokovic is the top seed for the fifth straight year in Canada. Djokovic has a 26-5 career record in Canada, winning in Montreal twice (2007, 2011) and Toronto in 2012. He has a 15-2 match record in Montreal and 11-3 in Toronto. Djokovic has won 14 of his past 16 Rogers Cup matches, all as the top seed. His only losses in the past four years came in 2013 semi-finals (l. to Nadal in a third-set tie-break) and last year in the third round (l. to eventual champ Tsonga). Last year’s loss was the first time Djokovic lost before the quarter-finals in eight appearances at the Rogers Cup. Djokovic returned to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on 7 July 2014 after his five-set Wimbledon victory over Federer. This will be the 159th week (as of 10 August) he’s ranked No. 1 in his career, the sixth-most in the history of the Emirates ATP Rankings.
• 2015 Update - Djokovic comes into Montreal with a 48-3 match record (25-2 on hard) on the season and an ATP World Tour-leading six titles. The 28-year-old Serb also has a sparkling 21-0 record in Masters 1000 tournaments with four titles (Indian Wells, Miami, Monte-Carlo, Rome) and 18-2 record against Top 10 opponents, defeating every other Top 10 opponent at least once. Djokovic’s 28-match winning streak was snapped with his four-set loss to Wawrinka in the Roland Garros final on 7 June. It was his third runner-up finish in four years at Roland Garros and his only defeat since March (35-1).
• Weeks at No. 1 – Djokovic is closing in on John McEnroe’s total of 170 weeks at No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. Djokovic has held No. 1 the sixth-most weeks in the history of the Emirates ATP Rankings.
• A Look at the Champs – Here is a glance at the three other Rogers Cup winners:
Tsonga (2014): Last year’s champion has a 13-3 career record in Canada and a year ago came into Toronto ranked No. 15. His incredible run to a second Masters 1000 title (also 2008 Paris-Bercy) included four straight Top 10 wins: No. 1 Djokovic (3R), No. 9 Murray (QF), No. 8 Dimitrov (SF) and No. 3 Federer (F). This season, he has compiled a 13-8 match record (fewest matches played in Top 20) and was sidelined with a right forearm injury until returning in late March in Miami. His best result is a semi-final at Roland Garros (l. to eventual champ Wawrinka).
Nadal (2005, 2008, 2013): The three-time winner is celebrating the 10th anniversary of his first Canadian title (d. Agassi). Has a 26-6 career record in Canada (16-3 in Montreal, 10-3 in Toronto). In his last appearance two years ago, he won the title (d. No. 1 Djokovic in SF, Raonic in F). This season, he has compiled a 39-12 match record (26-6 on clay, 8-4 on hard, 5-2 on grass) with three titles (Buenos Aires, Stuttgart, Hamburg). Nadal slipped out of Top 5 on 11 May (at No. 7) for first time since 2 May 2005 and went to No. 10 for eight straight weeks before moving to No. 9 after winning the Hamburg title on 2 August.
Murray (2009-10): The two-time champ has a 21-6 career record and is making his 10th straight appearance in Canada. Since winning title in 2010, he has not advanced past the quarter-finals. The 28-year-old Brit lost in opening round (after bye) in Washington (l. to Gabashvili in third set tie-break). He has a 48-8 match record (21-6 on hard) on the season and three ATP World Tour titles (Munich, Masters 1000 Madrid, Queen’s).
• Thiem Titles – The 21-year-old Austrian has won three ATP World Tour titles this season, including back-to-back wins in the last two weeks in Umag and Gstaad. His 10-match winning streak came to an end with a semi-final loss in Kitzbuhel (l. to eventual champion Kohlschreiber). In May, he captured his maiden ATP World Tour title in Nice.
• Milestone Watch – Fernando Verdasco is one win away from 100 career Masters 1000-level match wins. Eleven active players have won 100 or more.
• Canadian Wild Cards – All four main draw wild cards have been awarded to Canadians, including recent Wimbledon quarter-finalist Vasek Pospisil, who was a semi-finalist here two years ago (l. to Raonic). The 25-year-old British Columbia native has a 6-4 career record at the Rogers Cup. Other wild cards are Philip Bester, who is playing in the main draw here for the first time since 2007 and is looking for his first win (0-3); Frank Dancevic, who is making his 13th appearance in 14 years (except ’11) and former World No. 1 junior Felip Peliwo (1-1, 2013). Dancevic was a quarter-finalist in 2007.
• Nestor Ageless Wonder – Veteran doubles specialist Daniel Nestor is making his record 27th straight tournament appearance. The 42-year-old Canadian has a 39-24 match record, winning both titles in Toronto, in 2000 (w/Lareau) and 2008 (w/Zimonjic). This season, Nestor has won two titles, increasing his career total to 87. Nestor has won at least one ATP World Tour title every year since 1994. He is playing in this year’s tournament with Frenchman Edouard Roger-Vasselin for the first time.
• Outstanding Doubles Field – Top seeds and four-time champions (2002, 2006, 2010, 2012) Bob and Mike Bryan are making their 15th straight Rogers Cup appearance. All four of their titles have come in Toronto. They were finalists in 2008 (Toronto) and in 2011 (Montreal). The two-time defending champions are Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares, while the No. 1 duo in the Emirates ATP Team Rankings Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau are playing in their first tournament since capturing Wimbledon last month.
Ranking Movers (as of 10 August)
Kei Nishikori 4 (+1 spot)
John Isner 12 (+6 spots)
Dominic Thiem 18 (+3 spots) - career high
Philipp Kohlschreiber 28 (+11 spots)
Steve Johnson 32 (+12 spots)
Sam Groth 53 (+9 spots) - career high
Ricardas Berankis 74 (+12 spots)
Paul-Henri Mathieu 78 (+31 spots)
Alexander Zverev 86 (+10 spots)
Radu Albot 93 (+6 spots) - career high
Potential Milestones (as of 10 August)
Montreal - Singles
Montreal - Doubles
14 August – Yen-Hsun Lu (32)
16 August – Diego Schwartzmann (23)
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