Tsitsipas takes on Monfils in Mubadala Tennis C’ship opener - GulfToday

Tsitsipas takes on Monfils in Mubadala Tennis C’ship opener

Tsitsipas takes on Monfils in  Mubadala Tennis C’ship opener

Top seeds Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will be in action on the second day of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship.

Mubadala World Tennis Championship organisers confirmed Hyeon Chung as the eighth and final player in an all-star field, and unveiled the full draw for the 12th edition, which runs from Dec.19-21 at Abu Dhabi’s International Tennis Centre at the Zayed Sports City.

Chung, returning to Abu Dhabi after making his debut at the 2018 event, joins a stellar field featuring five of the world’s top 10 male players: World No. 1 Rafael Nadal, No. 2 Novak Djokovic, No.5 Daniil Medvedev, No.6 Stefanos Tsitsipas and No. 10 Gael Monfils.

With the line-up now complete, spectators can prepare for three days of top-class tennis action and off-court entertainment with Sunday marking the official draw for the championship.

The first match of this year’s championship will see Tsitsipas, winner of this 2019 ATP Finals, take on French crowd favourite Monfils on Thursday, Dec.19 at 4pm. That match will be followed by Chung vs Medvedev in the second quarter-final.

Day 1, which is also Kids’ Day and offers free entry to children 12 and under, will then see the women take to the court.

Top seeds Nadal and Djokovic enter the championship on Day 2 with the defending champion Djokovic facing either Tsitsipas or Monfils in the first semi-final following the fifth place play-off which will take place at 3pm.

Nadal will make his 10th Mubadala World Tennis Championship appearance following that match, where he will face the winner of the Medvedev vs Chung match, in what could be a rematch of this year’s epic US Open final. Day 3, on Dec.21, will see a third place play-off at 5pm, followed by the final.

Since making his debut in the inaugural event in 2009, Nadal has become one of the best tennis players of all-time, winning 13 of his 19 Grand Slam titles in the process.  He has claimed the Mubadala World Tennis Championship title four times, with his most recent victory coming in 2016 with win over David Goffin in the final.

For Chung, the championship represents an opportunity to get his 2020 season off to a winning start.

“I very much enjoyed the experience in my first Mubadala World Tennis Championship last year,” said Chung.

“It’s great fun and I’m coming back to show the people of Abu Dhabi what I’m capable of, and that I’m ready to compete with the best players in the world again.”

Djokovic has had an excellent year, having clinched the season-opening Australian Open by defeating Nadal in the final before being crowned the ‘King of Grass’, downing Roger Federer in the final at Wimbledon. Most recently, Djokovic won the Japan Open, beating the US’ John Millman in straight sets.

Djokovic, who has 16 Grand Slam titles to his name, has developed a strong connection with Abu Dhabi, having claimed the MWTC crown four times. In the 2018 final, he defeated South Africa’s Kevin Anderson in a thrilling final, eventually winning 4-6, 7-5, 7-5.

The Tennis Village will open each day at 12pm, ensuring ticket holders can make the most of excellent food and beverage offerings in the Tennis Village, tennis clinics, question and answer A sessions with the players and a host of tennis-themed activities and competitions offering great prizes.

 “The 12th edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship is fast shaping up to be the most exciting in the event’s history. We are looking forward to providing our spectators with a dynamic combination of world-class tennis and family fun in what is an unmissable event,” said John Lickrish, CEO of Flash Entertainment.

With anticipation building, a new date on the calendar – the championship has been brought forward a week from its traditional spot – tickets selling fast, a full line-up of tennis talent and a range of fun off-court activities for the whole family, the 2019 edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship will provide an unrivalled experience in the UAE capital.

Beyond the three-day tournament, the Championship is committed to creating a lasting legacy for tennis in the UAE through various community programmes that raise awareness of the benefits of tennis and the importance of a healthy and active lifestyle.