By: Ben Raby (www.twitter.com/benraby31)
The 50th edition of the Citi Open wraps up Sunday with a number of past D.C. champions looking to once again leave town victorious.
The festivities begin with the Men’s Doubles Final at 12:30 p.m. on Stadium Court as Mike Bryan looks to become the first player in Citi Open history to win five titles.
Bryan and partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin meet No.4 seed Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares in the championship match.
Bryan and Roger-Vasselin made quick work of Denis Kudla (Arlington, Va.) and Frances Tiafoe (Hyattsville, Md.) on Saturday, beating the local favorites 6-2, 6-3, in 48 minutes in the semifinals.
Bryan, 40, is competing in the Citi Open for the 15th time in his career, but for the first time without his twin brother Bob. Bob Bryan has been sidelined since May with a hip injury that will cause him to miss the remainder of the season.
Mike Bryan has already established a new tournament record with his seventh finals appearance.
The Men’s Singles Final is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Stadium Court as No.1 seed and defending champion Alexander Zverev looks to join an exclusive group. Entering this year’s event, the only players to successfully defend their D.C. titles were Andre Agassi, Michael Chang and Juan Martin del Potro.
Del Potro was the last repeat winner (2008 and 2009), but Zverev can join that group should he prevail this afternoon against 19-year-old Alex de Minaur.
Zverev reached his fifth final of the year with a workmanlike 6-2, 6-4 win over Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semifinals. De Minaur spent nearly three hours on court Saturday night, rallying for an epic comeback against No.16 seed Andrey Rublev.
De Minaur saved four match points in a second-set tiebreak en route to a 5-7, 7-6 (6), 6-4 win. The Australian, who is set to crack the Top-50 for the first time in his career on Monday, will be competing in his first career ATP final.
Zverev and de Minaur have met once previously, with Zverev prevailing in a fifth-set tiebreaker in Davis Cup competition in February.
A win in Sunday’s Final would allow Zverev to join Tour veterans Roger Federer and Steve Johnson as the only players to win titles on multiple surfaces this season. Zverev has already won a pair of clay court tournaments this year in Munich and Madrid.
Soon after the Men’s Final is completed, the Women’s Final will take place on Stadium Court as former World No.2 Svetlana Kuznetsova takes on No.7 seed Donna Vekic.
Kuznetsova is seeking her second career Citi Open, having been crowned champion in D.C. in 2014. Vekic is vying for her first WTA title of the year and the third of her career.
Kuznetsova, 33, was sidelined for six months with a wrist injury before returning in March. The two-time Grand Slam champion entered the Citi Open having won just four matches in 10 events this year, but she has cruised through the Washington draw this week, winning all eight sets she’s played while dropping just 14 games.
Sunday’s Women’s Doubles Final will pit No.3 seed Xinyun Han and Darija Jurak against Alexa Guarachi and Erin Routliffe. That match is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on the newly named John A. Harris Grandstand.
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