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US OPEN '18: Williams, Murray, Wawrinka return to New York

NEWS
News
107   //    27 Aug 2018, 02:31 IST
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NEW YORK (AP) — A glance at the U.S. Open, the year's last Grand Slam tennis tournament:

SURFACE

Hard courts.

SITE

USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York.

SCHEDULE

The 14-day tournament begins Monday. The women's singles final is Saturday, Sept. 8; the men's singles final is Sunday, Sept. 9. Unlike Wimbledon or the French Open, there are night sessions.

LOOKAHEAD TO MONDAY

There will be a long list of U.S. Open returns on Day 1 at Flushing Meadows. Serena Williams, Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka are all past champions who missed last year's edition of the tournament and are scheduled to play Monday. In addition, defending champions Rafael Nadal and Sloane Stephens are on the schedule. Williams will face Magda Linette in Arthur Ashe Stadium to start the night session, followed by Nadal against David Ferrer in a rematch of the 2013 French Open final. After No. 1-ranked Simona Halep, whose first Grand Slam title came at the French Open in June, takes on Kaia Kanepi in the first match played in the reconstructed Louis Armstrong Stadium, which now features a retractable roof, 2012 champion Murray will play James Duckworth. It'll be Murray's first Grand Slam tournament since Wimbledon last year; he had hip surgery in January. That'll be followed by Stephens against Evgeniya Rodina. Then comes the first Armstrong night session, with two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka — yet another player who missed the U.S. Open a year ago — playing Viktoria Kuzmova, and 2009 U.S. Open winner Juan Martin del Potro against Donald Young. Wawrinka, a three-time major champ who won the 2016 U.S. Open, faces No. 8 seed Grigor Dimitrov to get things started in Ashe — Wawrinka beat Dimitrov in the first round at Wimbledon — followed by Venus Williams vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova in a matchup of past titlists in New York.

MONDAY'S FORECAST

Partly cloudy. High of 91 degrees (33 Celsius)

LAST YEAR

Nadal overwhelmed Kevin Anderson 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 to win his third championship at Flushing Meadows and second Slam title of the year. Nadal began last season on a 2½-year drought, not making even one appearance in a major final. Stephens capped her rapid rise from a ranking of 957th in early August to Grand Slam champion by beating her close friend Madison Keys 6-3, 6-0 in the first major final for both. Stephens became only the second unseeded woman to win the tournament in the Open era, which began in 1968.

KEY STATISTIC

20 to 17 — Roger Federer's number of Grand Slam singles titles, the most for a man, compared to second-place Nadal's total.

KEY QUOTE

"If anything, I have more fire in my belly." — Serena Williams.

PRIZE MONEY

Total is $53 million, with $3.8 million each to the men's and women's singles champions.

NEWS
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