Scouting Report: Ruud, Fritz In Geneva, Norrie, Felix Headline Lyon
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH IN GENEVA
Two-Time Defending Champ Ruud: Ruud will aim to become the first player in tournament history to capture three consecutive titles when he takes to court in Geneva. The Norwegian clinched his 10th tour-level trophy, his ninth on clay, earlier this season in Estoril before he advanced to the semi-finals in Rome, where he is still alive.
Can Fritz Regain Form? Taylor Fritz clinched his fifth tour-level trophy earlier this season in Delray Beach before he advanced to the semi-finals at clay-court events in Monte-Carlo and Munich. He arrives in Geneva off the back of disappointing defeats in Madrid and Rome, though, where he fell in the fourth round and second round, respectively. Can he bounce back with a title run in Switzerland?
Dimitrov & Zverev Receive Wild Cards: Grigor Dimitrov and Alexander Zverev have both compete as wild cards. The 26-year-old Zverev lifted the trophy in his only previous appearance in Geneva in 2019, while Dimitrov reached the quarter-finals in 2021. Zverev opens against Christopher Eubanks or Benoit Paire, while Dimitrov plays Roberto Carballes Baena or a qualifier.
#NextGenATP American Shelton In Action: Ben Shelton has enjoyed some positive results in his first season competing on the clay on the ATP Tour. The 20-year-old earned tour-level wins in Estoril and Barcelona and will look to build on that in Geneva on his tournament debut. The American is currently fourth in the Next Gen ATP Race and will want a deep run to climb further.
Wu Chasing Clay Success: Wu Yibing broke new ground earlier this season when he clinched his first tour-level title on hard courts in Dallas. The Chinese star is now looking to transfer that form onto clay, having earned just one win on the surface so far this year. The 23-year-old, who is 1-3 on clay in 2023, is making his debut in Geneva.
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FIVE THINGS TO WATCH IN LYON
Reigning Titlist Norrie: Norrie holds an impressive record in Lyon, having reached the final in 2021 before lifting the trophy in 2022. The Briton, who advanced to the fourth round in Rome last week, is currently 10th in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin and will be hoping for a strong week to close the gap on eighth-placed Fritz.
Felix Competes, Paul Continues Turin Pursuit: Felix Auger-Aliassime will make his third appearance in Lyon after receiving a wild card. The Canadian, who reached the final at the ATP 250 in 2019, is seeking his first clay-court win of the season, after suffering opening-round defeats in Madrid and Rome.
Tommy Paul is 11th in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin on 1,385 points. The American is currently 440 points behind Fritz in eighth and will be determined to regain his early season form in Lyon, where he is making his second appearance. The 26-year-old reached the semi-finals at the Australian Open in January, with his best result on clay a run to the final at an ATP Challenger Tour event in France.
2022 Next Gen ATP Finals Stars In Action: Brandon Nakashima and Jack Draper both lit up Milan last year, with the former winning the title. Both are in action in Lyon, where they will be hoping to kickstart their seasons. The American Nakashima is 3-6 on the season, while Draper has not competed since Monte-Carlo due to injury.
Home Favourites: Richard Gasquet, Gael Monfils, Gregoire Barrere, Corentin Moutet and Arthur Fils will lead French hopes at the ATP 250. Gasquet has tasted success in Lyon before, winning the title in 2006, while Barrere arrives off the back of a run to the third round in Rome. Moutet is making his fourth appearance at the clay-court tournament, having advanced to the second round in 2019. Monfils first competed in Lyon in 2005, when he reached the final. #NextGenATP star Fils has impressed on the ATP Tour this season, reaching semi-finals in Montpellier and Marseille.
Ram/Salisbury Lead Doubles Field: Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury will look to win their first title of the season when they team in Lyon. The American-British tandem, who have won nine trophies together, will face competition from Maximo Gonzalez/Andres Molteni and Nicolas Mahut/Matwe Middelkoop.