Wild cards Andy Murray and Kei Nishikori will meet in a first-round blockbuster at the San Diego Open, it was revealed at the ATP 250’s draw ceremony on Friday evening.
It will be the 12th meeting in the pair’s ATP Head2Head rivalry, which Murray leads 9-2. They have not played since the Roland Garros quarter-finals in 2017, when the Scot triumphed in four sets.
The winner between former World No. 1 Murray and former World No. 4 Nishikori will face a stiff test in the second round against second seed Casper Ruud, who is competing this weekend for Team Europe in the Laver Cup. The Norwegian recently cracked the Top 10 of the FedEx ATP Rankings for the first time and has won four ATP Tour titles this year.
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Top seed Andrey Rublev will open his run against Italian Fabio Fognini or #NextGenATP American Brandon Nakashima, who received a wild card. This will be the first clash between Fognini and Nakashima.
Rublev will play sixth seed Diego Schwartzman in the quarter-finals if both men make it that far. Rublev beat Schwartzman 4-6, 6-3, 11-9 on Friday in a Laver Cup thriller.
Third seed Felix Auger-Aliassime will begin his tournament against 2017 Nitto ATP Finals champion Grigor Dimitrov or Hungarian Marton Fucsovics and fourth seed Denis Shapovalov will play American Taylor Fritz or a qualifier in the second round.