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Scouting Report: Sinner, Alcaraz headline at Halle, Queen's Club

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

The grass-court season continues with ATP 500 events at Halle and Queen’s Club. Many of the sport’s biggest stars, including World No. 1 Jannik Sinner and World No. 2 Carlos Alcaraz will be in action.

There is plenty at stake at the Terra Wortmann Open and the Cinch Championships. Who will battle through the loaded fields? looks at five things to watch at each tournament.

1) Sinner Makes Debut As No. 1:
For the first time, Sinner will compete as the No. 1 player in the PIF ATP Rankings. The Italian is the top seed in Halle, where he played in qualifying in 2019 as a 17-year-old and trained with Roger Federer. Sinner, who made the quarter-finals at the ATP 500 event last year, will begin his grass-court season against Tallon Griekspoor.

2) Zverev At Home: One week ago, Alexander Zverev was a set from winning the Roland Garros title. How will he bounce back as his grass season begins? The German made back-to-back Halle finals in 2016 and 2017 and the semi-finals last year. A semi-finalist in 2023, the second-seeded Zverev will try to make a good start against a qualifier.

3) Medvedev Seeks First Title Of 2024: Daniil Medvedev is a 20-time tour-level titlist who will try to add to his trophy cabinet for the first time this year in Halle. The 28-year-old owns a 6-3 record at the ATP 500 event, where he advanced to the final in 2022. The third seed will play Nuno Borges in the first round.

4) Past Champions: Two former Halle titlists are in the field: defending champion Alexander Bublik and 2022 winner Hubert Hurkacz. According to Infosys ATP Stats, they have both led the ATP Tour in aces for a season (Bublik in 2021, Hurkacz in 2023) and are dangerous opponents on grass. Bublik, the seventh seed, opens against a qualifier. Hurkacz, the fifth seed, plays Flavio Cobolli in the first round and could meet #NextGenATP Brazilian Joao Fonseca in the second round. The 17-year-old is making his tour-level grass-court debut.

5) Sinner Doubles Up: Sinner is among several singles stars competing in the doubles field. The Italian is partnering Hubert Hurkacz, while Andrey Rublev plays with Zverev. The top seeds are Roland Garros finalists Simone Bolelli and Andrea Vavassori.


1) Alcaraz Defending Champion:
Last year, the Cinch Championships was just the third grass-court event of Alcaraz’s professional career. Not only is he the defending champion this time around, but also a Wimbledon titlist. Alcaraz carries a 12-match grass-court winning streak into London’s ATP 500 event and will try to retain the momentum from his triumph at Roland Garros.

2) In-Form De Minaur: Of the Top 12 players in the PIF ATP Live Race To Turin, only seventh-placed Alex de Minaur — who will climb to sixth with a title Sunday in ‘s-Hertogenbosch — has never competed in the Nitto ATP Finals. The Australian is on course to make his debut at the season finale this year and will try to maintain his form at Queen’s Club. The defending finalist, seeded second this edition, will face a tricky opening test against Lorenzo Musetti.

3) Murray Back For More: Former World No. 1 Andy Murray owns the record for Queen’s Club titles with five. Will he roll back the years over the next week to add a sixth singles trophy from the event to his resume? The last time the Scot claimed the crown in singles was in 2016. He opens his tournament against a qualifier.

4) American Contingent: With qualifying still to be completed, there are sixth Americans in the main draw: Taylor Fritz, Tommy Paul, Ben Shelton, Sebastian Korda, Frances Tiafoe and Brandon Nakashima. Fritz, Paul and Shelton are seeded fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively. Korda has shown good form by reaching the ‘s-Hertogenbosch final (to be played Sunday) and Nakashima, who began his season at World No. 134, is up to No. 63 in the PIF ATP Live Rankings.

5) Queen’s Club Doubles Trial: Queen’s Club is the second tournament participating in the 2024 ATP Doubles Trial. The top four seeds are all major champions, including first seeds Rohan Bopanna/Matthew Ebden (2024 Australian Open) and third seeds Marcelo Arevalo/Mate Pavic (2024 Roland Garros). Twelve of the Top 35 players in the PIF ATP Rankings are competing in the doubles draw as well as Murray, who won the title in 2019 with Feliciano Lopez. Murray and Daniel Evans open against defending champions Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek.


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Murray among singles stars playing doubles at Queen's Club; Sinner partnering Hurkacz in Halle

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

The 2024 ATP Doubles Trial continues next week at the Cinch Championships, where there is a loaded draw full of top doubles teams and singles stars, including Andy Murray.

Murray is partnering Daniel Evans for the second time this year after competing together at Roland Garros. They will face fourth seeds and defending champions Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek in the first round.

View Queen’s Club Doubles Draw

The former World No. 1 Murray won the Queen’s Club doubles title in 2019 alongside Feliciano Lopez.

Twelve of the Top 35 players in the PIF ATP Rankings are competing at Queen’s Club, and all but one first-round match pit doubles players against singles players. There is one match between two singles tandems: eighth seeds Taylor Fritz and Karen Khachanov play Francisco Cerundolo and Tomas Martin Etcheverry.

Top seeds Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden open against qualifiers, while second seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury play Alex de Minaur and Sebastian Korda, who will be opponents on Sunday in the ’s-Hertogenbosch singles final.

Third seeds Marcelo Arevalo and Mate Pavic, the recent Roland Garros champions, take on Americans Frances Tiafoe and Tommy Paul.


Sinner playing doubles with Hurkacz in Halle
New World No. 1 Jannik Sinner is wasting no time getting plenty of action this grass-court season. In addition to singles, the Italian is playing doubles with Hubert Hurkacz in Halle at the Terra Wortmann Open. The singles stars face third seeds and ’s-Hertogenbosch champions Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow in the first round. View Halle Doubles Draw

The top seeds are Roland Garros finalists Simone Bolelli and Andrea Vavassori, who open against singles standouts Tallon Griekspoor and Jan-Lennard Struff.

Another team to watch is Andrey Rublev and Alexander Zverev, who take on wild cards Yannick Hanfmann and Dominik Koepfer.

Daniil Medvedev played in doubles qualifying with Roman Safiullin on Saturday, but lost in straight sets. Yuki Bhambri and Albano Olivetti defeated them 7-6(4), 6-4.


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Sinner's first opponent as World No. 1 in Halle is…

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

Jannik Sinner’s life as No. 1 in the PIF ATP Rankings will start with a first-round clash against Tallon Griekspoor at the Terra Wortmann Open.

The 22-year-old Italian will be wary of his first grass-court opponent of the year at the ATP 500 in Halle. Griekspoor won a tour-level title on grass in ‘s-Hertogenbosch last year, and the Dutchman was the only player to take a set off Sinner during his Miami title run in March.

Yet Sinner will still enter the match with a 4-0 Lexus ATP Head2Head series lead against Griekspoor. Should he pass his opening test on the German grass, the 13-time tour-level champion would take on Fabian Marozsan or Roman Safiullin. Sixth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas is a potential quarter-final opponent for Sinner, while Daniil Medvedev and defending champion Alexander Bublik are potential semi-final opponents.

Tsitsipas opens his campaign against home wild card Henri Squire. The third-seeded Medvedev, a finalist in Halle in 2022, plays Nuno Borges first, with Bublik starting his title defence against a qualifier.

In the bottom half of the draw, home favourite Alexander Zverev also faces a qualifier as he looks to bounce back from his Roland Garros championship-match defeat to Carlos Alcaraz. Zverev, who reached back-to-back Halle finals in 2016 and 2017, could play Felix Auger-Aliassime in the quarter-finals if both players progress that far.


A stacked third quarter of the draw features fourth seed Andrey Rublev, 2022 champion Hubert Hurkacz, and former Top 10 star Matteo Berrettini. Competing as the fifth seed, Hurkacz will take on Flavio Cobolli in the first round, with #NextGenATP Brazilian Joao Fonseca a potential second-round opponent.

Rublev begins his week against Marcos Giron, with Berrettini or a qualifier awaiting in the second round. The 28-year-old Berrettini has won three of his eight ATP Tour crowns on grass, and on Sunday will play for another title at the BOSS OPEN in Stuttgart, where he plays Jack Draper in the championship match.


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Defending champion Alcaraz faces tough draw at Queen's Club

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

Defending champion Carlos Alcaraz faces a tough draw at the Cinch Championships, his first tournament since winning the Roland Garros title.

The No. 2 player in the PIF ATP Rankings will open his grass-court season against a Top 30 opponent in Argentine Francisco Cerundolo. They played in 2019 at an ITF World Tennis Tour event in Palmanova, Spain, when Alcaraz was 15, and Cerundolo triumphed 6-2, 6-4.

Should Alcaraz advance, his path will not get easier. The Spaniard would face Jack Draper, who could claim his first ATP Tour title Sunday in Stuttgart, or 2024 breakthrough star Mariano Navone. The first seeded opponent the 21-year-old could play is fifth seed Tommy Paul, who has won two of their four Lexus ATP Head2Head meetings.

Alcaraz is on a 12-match grass-court winning streak following his titles at Queen’s Club and Wimbledon last year.


Second seed Alex de Minaur, who will play in the ’s-Hertogenbosch final on Sunday, faces a tricky opening test against Italian Lorenzo Musetti, who reached the Stuttgart semi-finals. The Australian made the final last year at Queen’s Club.

Five-time Cinch Championships winner Andy Murray will face a qualifier in the first round. Should he win, the former World No. 1 will play seventh seed Holger Rune or Jordan Thompson.

There are several intriguing first-round matches. Korda, a finalist in ’s-Hertogenbosch, plays big-hitting Karen Khachanov, Cameron Norrie opens against Milos Raonic in a battle of former Top 10 stars and 2017 Nitto ATP Finals champion Grigor Dimitrov, the third seed, takes on Adrian Mannarino, a two-time grass-court titlist. 


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Predictor Picks: Could Sinner, Medvedev & Fritz be great grass picks?

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

The grass-court season continues with ATP 500 events at Halle and Queen’s Club, with many of the biggest stars in the sport in action.

New World No. 1 in the PIF ATP Rankings Jannik Sinner headlines the field at the Terra Wortmann Open in Halle, while Roland Garros champion Carlos Alcaraz returns to action at the Cinch Championships.

Before each tournament week, looks at three players who might be good selections for fans in the PIF ATP Rankings Predictor.

Make Your Picks Now!

Jannik Sinner — defending 90 points
The Italian arrives in Germany as the 29th No. 1 in the history of the PIF ATP Rankings. He will try to make a splash in his first week at the pinnacle of men’s tennis.

Sinner, who seeks his first title on grass, has enjoyed success on the surface before. One year ago, he made the semi-finals at Wimbledon (l. to Djokovic) and in 2022 he took a two-sets-to-none lead before falling to Novak Djokovic in five sets.

The 22-year-old has also improved his serve, which should make him an even tougher opponent on grass. His first-round opponent will be Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor, against whom he owns a 4-0 Lexus ATP Head2Head record.

Daniil Medvedev — defending 90 points
The third seed in Halle is former World No. 1 Daniil Medvedev. The 28-year-old has enjoyed the most success on hard courts, but he has also performed well on grass.

Medvedev has won a title (2021 Mallorca) and reached two more finals (2022 ‘s-Hertogenbosch and Halle) on the surface. Last season, he reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon.

This year’s Australian Open and Indian Wells finalist has played consistently throughout the season and will try to maintain that as he transitions surfaces. He begins his tournament against Nuno Borges and could play Sinner in the semi-finals.


Taylor Fritz — defending 45 points
Few players have as powerful of a one-two punch as Fritz does in his serve and forehand. The aggressive American enjoys controlling points and that has served him well on grass before.

Fritz won two of his seven ATP Tour titles on the surface, triumphing in Eastbourne in 2019 and 2022. Last year, he lost in the second round at Queen’s Club, but that defeat came against a tricky grass-court opponent in Adrian Mannarino.

Fritz will try to gain net points on the London grass, where he will pursue his second title of the season (Delray Beach). The American will open against a qualifier and if he wins, Fritz will face Cameron Norrie or Milos Raonic.

Bonus Ball — Jannik Sinner
The Italian must reach the quarter-finals in Halle to gain points this week. The good news for fans keen to select Sinner is that he has consistently earned his way deep into tournaments throughout 2024.

The only event at which the 22-year-old did not advance to the semi-finals this year was the Mutua Madrid Open, where he withdrew ahead of the quarter-finals due to injury.

Sinner advanced to the last eight in Halle last year and will try to push further into the draw at this edition.


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De Minaur reaches 's-Hertogenbosch final, climbs to new heights

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

Alex de Minaur continues to climb to new heights.

The Australian defeated big-serving lefty Ugo Humbert 7-6(4), 6-3 on Saturday to reach the final of the Libema Open. By doing so, he is guaranteed to reach a career-high No. 8 in the PIF ATP Rankings on Monday.

“It was an interesting one that’s for sure. I got off to a very good start playing some great tennis and then I maybe lost focus a little bit,” De Minaur said. “Ugo is an incredible competitor, he always fights ’til the end, so he made it very tricky. I was able to just sneak that first set and then happy with the break at the end and happy to be here. Happy it didn’t rain and onto the final.”

The top seed lost five consecutive games to his French opponent from 4-0 up in the first set, but De Minaur remained calm in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. He won 62 per cent of his second-serve return points, which proved critical.

The on-court reporter asked De Minaur about competing in ’s-Hertogenbosch as a Top 10 player for the first time. If he lifts the trophy, the 25-year-old will surge to No. 7.

“At the end of the day it’s just tennis,” De Minaur said. “You run for that yellow ball from one side to the other. You try to have fun and yeah, I’m definitely enjoying myself here on the grass, so I’m very happy with that.”

Earlier on Saturday, Humbert completed a 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 quarter-final victory against Gijs Brouwer in a match that began on Friday evening.

De Minaur’s opponent on Sunday, Sebastian Korda, will try to snap a three-year wait for a second ATP Tour title. 

The American charged into the championship match with a 6-2, 6-4 triumph against home favourite and defending champion Tallon Griekspoor. Korda converted three of the four break points he earned, according to Infosys ATP Stats, while he did not face a break point on his own serve in his 64-minute semi-final win.

“Overall, I’m very happy with today,” said Korda in his on-court interview. “It was super tricky, super windy, and obviously Tallon is an unbelievable player and he won here last year. It’s a nice confidence boost for me and hopefully I can win another match tomorrow.”

Korda now holds a 2-0 lead in his Lexus ATP Head2Head series with his good friend Griekspoor. The 23-year-old American is 1-5 in tour-level finals, with his sole victory coming on clay in Parma in 2021.


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Berrettini back in Stuttgart final; Will he defeat Draper for the title?

  • Posted: Jun 15, 2024

Matteo Berrettini is back in a big way.

In his first tournament since Monte-Carlo in April, the former No. 6 player in the PIF ATP Rankings is into the Stuttgart final. The Italian defeated countryman Lorenzo Musetti 6-4, 6-0 Saturday to reach the championship match of the BOSS OPEN.

“When you win like this, it’s better,” Berrettini said of his 66-minute victory. “You just burn less energy. I think I played enough during the week. So today, it was really good to play an hour and six minutes.”

Berrettini has thrived on grass throughout his career. The 2021 Wimbledon finalist has triumphed in Stuttgart twice before and is one win from claiming a hat-trick of crowns at the German ATP 250.

There were razor-thin margins in the first set. Musetti actually earned more break points in the opener (4-2), but did not convert any of his chances. Berrettini faced a 0/40 deficit when he served for the set at 5-4, but powered through to move within one set of victory.


Musetti then gifted him a break to begin the second set when he missed a high backhand volley. Berrettini surged to the finish line from there, converting four of his seven break points to triumph according to Infosys ATP Stats.

“Obviously, it’s never easy when you play against a good friend like Lorenzo. We know each other pretty well,” Berrettini said. “Especially at the beginning, I think you could see there was a little bit of tension. But I was able to hold my nerves, especially when I served for the first set. And then after that I was feeling better and better and happy for the win.”

His next opponent, Jack Draper, will already become the new British No. 1 on Monday. Will he also enter the new week as a first-time ATP Tour champion?

The lefty is one win from earning his maiden trophy after cruising past 2022 Next Gen ATP Finals presented by PIF titlist Brandon Nakashima 6-3, 6-3 in 72 minutes.

The 22-year-old hit 13 aces and won 94 per cent of his first-serve points (31/33). He did not face a break point in the match.

Draper and former World No. 1 Andy Murray are the only British finalists in event history. At 22 years and five months, the lefty is set to become the youngest British No. 1 since Murray in November 2009.


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