Federer, Djokovic Lead Cincinnati Play Tuesday; View Preview & Schedule
Medvedev, Isner, Dimitrov also feature on day three
World No. 1 and defending champion Novak Djokovic, seven-time former titlist Roger Federer, last week’s Coupe Rogers finalist Daniil Medvedev, John Isner and 2017 winner Grigor Dimitrov open their campaigns at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati on Tuesday, which features 11 men’s singles and five doubles matches.
Twelve months ago, Djokovic captured his first Cincinnati crown to become the first player to secure the Career Golden Masters of all nine ATP Masters 1000 trophies and he has since added the Shanghai Rolex Masters (d. Coric) and the 2019 Mutua Madrid Open (d. Tsitsipas) titles. The 33-time Masters 1000 champion shows no sign of letting up, having compiled a 35-6 record in 2019, and, almost one month on from capturing his fifth Wimbledon title, Djokovic returns to ATP Tour action fourth on Centre Court today to face Sam Querrey, who beat Pierre-Hugues Herbert 7-6(2), 7-6(1) in the first round on Monday.
Three years ago, Querrey ended Djokovic’s hopes of a calendar-year Grand Slam at 2016 Wimbledon with a 7-6(6), 6-1, 3-6, 7-6(5) third-round win, which marked his second victory over the Serbian (also 2012 ATP Masters 1000 Paris) in their 10-match FedEx ATP Head2Head series. Like Djokovic, Querrey is also contesting his first tournament since last month’s grass-court major, where he reached the quarter-finals (l. to Nadal). In his 26 matches this season (17-9 record), the American has struck 422 aces and won 88 per cent of his service games.
The Lindner Family Tennis Center in Cincinnati wasn’t always a happy hunting ground for Federer, who got off to a 1-4 start, but since 2005 the Swiss superstar has put together a 45-5 record, including a tournament-record seven titles. Today, Federer opens the night session from 7:00 p.m. local time against wild card Juan Ignacio Londero, who will face a Top 10 opponent for the third time. Londero, who overcame Matteo Berrettini 7-6(3), 6-3 on Monday for his first Masters 1000 match win, comes up against a player who is 378-106 overall in the tournament series. Federer lost to Djokovic in last year’s Cincinnati final, but has since captured his fourth Miami Open presented by Itau crown (d. Isner) in March that represented his 28th Masters 1000 trophy.
For the second consecutive week, two former World No. 3s Dimitrov and Stan Wawrinka meet in the first round of a Masters 1000 tournament. At last week’s Coupe Rogers in Montreal, Wawrinka got the better of Dimitrov 6-4, 6-4 and now leads 3-1 on hard-court in their 10-match FedEx ATP Head2Head series (Wawrinka 6-4 overall). They open Center Court play from 11 a.m. local time.
Two Americans, 2013 finalist Isner and Frances Tiafoe, feature on Grandstand, the second show court. Isner, who is contesting his first Masters 1000 event since reaching the Miami final in March, takes on former World No. 10 Pablo Carreno Busta, a qualifier, for the first time, while Tiafoe meets three-time Masters 1000 finalist and World No. 15 Gael Monfils, who is competing in Cincinnati for the first time since 2016.
Elsewhere, World No. 8 Medvedev, who has won eight of his past 10 matches — including final runs at the Citi Open in Washington D.C. (l. to Kyrgios) and last week in Montreal (l. to Nadal) — starts his title bid against Kyle Edmund. The Russian No. 1 is 38-16 on the season and already has his sights on qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals, to be held at The O2 in London from 10-17 November.
Prior to the tournament, Djokovic praised Medvedev, saying, “He’s had a few big weapons in his serve and backhand for a few years now, but he’s also added to his serve and moves very well. He’s improved in his mental strength and ability to cope with the pressure, which will only continue to get better as he plays more tough matches. He’s obviously put in the work and the results portray his quality and improvement.”
SCHEDULE - SATURDAY, 13 AUGUST 2019
CENTER COURT start 11:00 am
ATP - G. Dimitrov (BUL) vs S. Wawrinka (SUI)
Not Before 1:00 pm
ATP - [WC] R. Opelka (USA) vs  B. Coric (CRO) 46 63 34 - To Finish
ATP -  N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [WC] S. Querrey (USA)
Not Before 7:00 pm
ATP -  R. Federer (SUI) vs [WC] J. Londero (ARG)
Not Before 8:30 pm
GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
ATP - G. Monfils (FRA) vs F. Tiafoe (USA)
Not Before 7:00 pm
Not Before 8:30 pm
ATP - [Q] P. Carreno Busta (ESP) vs  J. Isner (USA)
STADIUM 3 start 11:00 am
ATP -  D. Goffin (BEL) vs T. Fritz (USA)
ATP - [LL] J. Sousa (POR) vs D. Shapovalov (CAN)
ATP -  D. Medvedev (RUS) vs K. Edmund (GBR)
Not Before 7:30 pm
COURT 4 start 11:00 am
ATP - [PR] F. Lopez (ESP) / A. Murray (GBR) vs  J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU)
ATP - H. Hurkacz (POL) vs  R. Bautista Agut (ESP)
ATP - J. Struff (GER) / D. Thiem (AUT) vs D. Schwartzman (ARG) / H. Zeballos (ARG)
COURT 8 start 11:00 am
ATP - F. Verdasco (ESP) vs B. Paire (FRA)
ATP - L. Djere (SRB) vs D. Schwartzman (ARG)
ATP -  J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) vs N. Kyrgios (AUS) / S. Tsitsipas (GRE)
ATP - C. Garin (CHI) / B. Paire (FRA) vs R. Albot (MDA) / K. Khachanov (RUS)
COURT 11 start 11:00 am
ATP - [Q] A. Rublev (RUS) vs  N. Basilashvili (GEO)
ATP - After Suitable Rest - A. Krajicek (USA) / E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) vs G. Pella (ARG) / J. Sousa (POR)