What To Watch For - Monday

The skies are clear, the temperature is comfortable. Even the weather is ready for Day 1 of the 2017 Citi Open main draw action. Last year’s women’s finalist Lauren Davis leads things off on Stadium Court, going up against Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus. Not familiar with Sabalenka? She’s a 19-year-old rising star out of Belarus, currently ranked No. 121 in the world.

Another player to watch, Bianca Andreescu, will open the day on Grandstand 1 against Camila Giorgi. Just 17 years old, Andreescu was a semifinalist at last year’s junior US Open as well as the 2017 junior Australian Open.  The wild card from Canada will have her work cut out for her against an Italian opponent known for her firepower.

Don’t forget to catch another Canadian, fan favorite Vasek Pospisil, on Court 1. He won’t take the court until at least 4:00 against Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland, but if you’re on the grounds, you’ll want to take a peek at that matchup. Plagued by injury in 2016, Pospisil took out world No. 1 Andy Murray at Indian Wells earlier this year. If healthy and confident, he has the game to go far in the Citi Open draw – he’s also a pretty great guitar player.  

Following Lauren Davis’ opener on Stadium Court, the day belongs to the American men.

Wild card American Tommy Paul will kick off his campaign on Stadium Court, as he looks to follow up on a quarterfinal showing last week in Atlanta. The 20-year-old will face off against Norwegian Casper Ruud who, at 18 years old, is on the verge of breaking into the ATP World Tour top 100. 

They will be followed by Rhode Island’s Jared Donaldson and Israel’s Dudi Sela. At just 5-foot-8, Sela doesn’t cut an imposing figure, but the former top-30 player took out towering American John Isner – who plays a similar big-serving game to Donaldson – at Wimbledon. 

Next up? Reilly Opelka. Standing 6-foot-11, the 19-year-old will meet Daniil Medvedev, 21, of Russia. Medvedev has been sizzling hot this season, reaching an ATP Final and taking out world No. 4 Stan Wawrinka at Wimbledon just a few weeks ago. Meanwhile, Opelka has risen almost 700 spot in the rankings since this time last year.

On the women’s side, make sure to catch former No. 1 Jelena Jankovic. Always colorful on the court, the Serb takes on rising French star Oceane Dodin – 12 years her junior. Another fan favorite, former top-10 player Andrea Petkovic, will close out the night on Grandstand 1 against Japan’s Kurumi Nara. It will be the first meeting between the two players.

And don’t forget doubles! Starting around 4:00, fans can catch Wimbledon champions Marcelo Melo and Lukasz Kubot up close and personal on Court 2. They won’t have an easy opener: top singles seed Dominic Thiem is “thiem”-ing with Robert Lindstedt in a bid to take out the newly-minted Grand Slam champs.

Former Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki and her partner top-15 singles player and 2016 Roland Garros doubles champion Kristina Mladenovic will wrap up doubles action against Cornelia Lister and Lu Jia-Jing. Get your front row seat on Court 2, and we’ll see you there!