The ATP Tour heads to Germany next week for the Hamburg European Open but it hasn’t been able to attract the ‘big hitters’ this season.
The likes of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have previously appeared at the oldest tennis tournament in Germany but they, along with Novak Djokovic, have elected to swerve this year’s event.
German Alexander Zverev and Austrian Dominic Thiem will be taking to the clay, however, while defending champion Nikoloz Basilashvili, Fabio Fognini, Benoit Paire and Cristian Garin could be serious contenders.
The Chilean has enjoyed a meteoric climb up the rankings over the past 12 months and he can further enhance his reputation at Rothenbaum Tennis Center.
After ending 2018 with 15 consecutive victories, he has proven himself to be an awkward customer on clay. Garin reached his first ATP final at the Brasil Open in March, losing to Guido Pella, before sealing titles at the US Men’s Clay Court Championships and the Bavarian Championships.
His form of late has been a little patchy on grass but he will feel more comfortable back on the clay when he faces Andrey Rublev in his first-round match on Monday.
World number 76 Rublev won their only previous meeting at Wimbledon earlier this year, coming from behind to win in four sets, but expect a different outcome in Germany.
It could be a good opening day for Chile with Nicolas Jarry also in action as he looks to continue building momentum following his victory at the Swedish Open on Sunday.
He beat Argentina’s Juan Ignacio Londero on clay to seal his maiden ATP Tour title in straight sets.
Monday’s assignment may prove to be much tougher as he goes up against home-favourite Alexander Zverev, although he has already beaten the German on clay this year.
They boast one victory apiece from two previous meetings and Jarry will be looking to move clear in the head-to-head statistics.
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