The European clay season is currently in full swing, with a couple of ATP events lined up for next week, including the Serbia Open. It is an ATP 250 tournament scheduled to be held in Belgrade from April 18-24.
World No. 1 and home favorite Novak Djokovic will be the cynosure of all eyes at this tournament. Apart from the Serb, the event has attracted a host of other top stars as well.
With some mouthwatering action in store for fans over the course of the week, here's all the information you need to know about the Serbia Open.
What is the Serbia Open?
This will be the sixth edition of the Serbia Open, which started in 2009 in Belgrade. The tournament was discontinued following the 2012 edition and returned to the Serbian capital in 2021 following a nine-year absence.
Novak Djokovic remains the most successful player at the Serbia Open, having lifted the trophy in 2009 and 2011.
The tournament will be held on red clay at the Novak Tennis Center in Belgrade.
Having suffered an inexplicable second-round exit from the Monte-Carlo Masters this week, Djokovic will be doubly motivated to perform well in his home tournament.
The Serbia Open will be the 20-time Major winner's third tournament of the year after Dubai and Monaco. The two-time champion suffered a semifinal defeat last year at the hands of eventual runner-up Aslan Karatsev.
The tournament provides Djokovic with the ideal opportunity to build some rhythm on clay ahead of the defense of his Roland Garros crown next month.
However, things will not be rosy for the 34-year-old. He will face tough competition from fellow top-10 star and second seed Andrey Rublev, who will be eager to rebound after a pre-quarterfinal exit in Monaco.
Top-40 players Karen Khachanov, Aslan Karatsev, Cristian Garin, Fabio Fognini, Miomir Kecmanovic and Filip Krajinovic round out the top eight seeds.
Also in the fray are former US Open winner Dominic Thiem and recently-crowned Marrakech champion David Goffin. The Austrian will be playing his first tour-level event since the Mallorca Open in June last year, where he sustained a wrist injury.
The long hiatus has seen his world ranking plummet to 51. Thiem made his comeback at the Marbella Challenger last month, but was bundled out by World No. 228 Pedro Cachin in the first round. He subsequently pulled out of the Monte-Carlo Masters after recovering from COVID-19 to get some medical tests done.
Defending champion Matteo Berrettini won't be participating this time following hand surgery.
The qualifying rounds at the Serbia Open will be held on Saturday, April 16 and Sunday, April 17. The main draw action kicks off on April 18 at 11 am local time.
The quarterfinals will be held over Thursday, April 21 and Friday, April 22. Both the semifinals are scheduled for Saturday, April 23, with the grand finale to be held a day later.
The total financial commitment for the Serbia Open is €597,900 while the prize money is €534,555.
Where to watch
Viewers from the US can catch all the action at the Serbia Open live on Tennis TV & Tennis Channel, while fans in the UK will be able to see it live on Amazon Prime Video. Canadians can watch the matches live on TSN. In Australia, one can view the action on beIN Sports.
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