Dominic Thiem, Gael Monfils join Novak Djokovic in Belgrade player field

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Dominic Thiem, Gael Monfils join Novak Djokovic in Belgrade player field

Former world No. 3 Dominic Thiem and French tennis star Gael Monfils have signed up to play the Serbia Open in Belgrade, according to Jelena Medic. Thiem, who hasn't played since June, has plummeted to No. 50 in the world but he will certainly be among the biggest names at the tournament this year.

Thiem, a clay court specialist, didn't play in Belgrade last year but he did play in Lyon - the week in which the Serbia Open was held. On the other side, Monfils is set to make his second appearance in Belgrade. Monfils didn't play Belgrade 1, but he played in Belgrade 2 - which took place the week before the French Open.

Monfils didn't impress in his Belgrade debut as he suffered a loss to Roberto Carballes Baena in his opener at the tournament. Thiem and Monfils join Novak Djokovic, whose participation was previously confirmed.

Thiem set for a comeback

Thiem was scheduled to make his long-awaited return from a wrist injury at the Indian Wells Masters.

Just before the start of Indian Wells, Thiem pulled out of the Masters events in Indian Wells and Miami. Thiem is now hoping to kick off his season during the clay season. “I had really good practice weeks," Thiem said.

"The wrist is perfectly fine, the hand is getting better and better, but still I've decided to pull out of Indian Wells and Miami to start the clay court season. It's still the surface I feel the most comfortable so it's a perfect time to start there.

"I really would have loved to have played in the States. I'm really sorry for my fans. Last time I played here in Indian Wells I won the tournament [in 2019]. "I love to play in the States and I can't wait to be back soon."

What was initially thought to be a minor setback, turned out to be an injury that has kept Thiem out for nearly a year.