Felix Auger-Aliassime, John Isner and Grigor Dimitrov set to play Chengdu


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Felix Auger-Aliassime, John Isner and Grigor Dimitrov set to play Chengdu

The Sichuan International Tennis Center in Chengdu will host the ATP 250 tournament for the fourth time as a part of the Chinese swing that also contains Zhuhai, Beijing and Shanghai. This incredible tennis facility possesses 20 outdoor hard courts and 12 indoor courts and it is also the third-strongest ATP 250 event in the calendar in terms of the Total Financial Commitment, another reason for the competitors to push as hard as possible.

Karen Khachanov, Denis Istomin and Bernard Tomic were the champions in the first three editions and the fourth promises to be the best one so far, with the organizers announcing the first stars that will play for the title.

World no. 14 John Isner should be among the top seeds, making his debut in Chengdu and seeking the first title in Asia. The American had failed to defend the title in Miami back in March, losing to Roger Federer and suffering a broken left foot injury that kept him off the court until Wimbledon, making a quick exit there before conquering the fourth title in Newport.

The most prominent youngster in the world Felix Auger-Aliassime should return to Chengdu as one of the favorites, playing as a qualifier there in 2018 and reaching the quarter-final, losing to an eventual champion Bernard Tomic.

Felix has won an impressive 28 matches on the Tour in 2019, advancing into three title matches in Rio de Janeiro, Lyon and Stuttgart besides the semi-final run at Miami Masters where he had a break advantage in both sets against John Isner before losing 7-6, 7-6.

The struggling Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov was the semi-finalist at the first edition in 2016 and if he continues to play on the current level he would need a wild card to enter Chengdu directly, winning only 11 matches so far in 2019 and experiencing another blow in Atlanta where he lost to world no.

405 Kevin King in the first round! For the first time since 2012, the Bulgarian is ranked outside the top-50 and will need much better tennis in the rest of the season to regain the confidence and the ranking position before starting all over in 2019, hopefully without a right shoulder injury that has bothered him a lot in recent months.

The rest of the field should be revealed in the next couple of months and it promises to be a really good one, especially if the organizers bring more competitors from the top-30.