The USTA announced that reigning French Open and Wimbledon Champion Rafael Nadal, five-time US Open champion Roger Federer and defending US Open Champion Juan Martin Del Potro, who is expected to return to Grand Slam competition after missing the French Open and Wimbledon earlier this year, lead the men’s singles field for the 2010 US Open Tennis Championships. The player field also features former US Open champions Andy Roddick and Lleyton Hewitt. Each of the world’s top 98 men received direct entry into the US Open, representing 33 countries.
The 2010 US Open will be played August 30 – September 12 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y. Both the men’s and women’s US Open singles champions will earn $1.7 million with the ability to earn an additional $1 million in bonus prize money (for a total $2.7 million potential payout) based on their performances in the Olympus US Open Series. The US Open Men’s Singles Championship is presented by Mercedes-Benz USA.
Leading the entry list is world No. 1 Rafael Nadal of Spain, who will be seeking his first US Open title. Nadal recently swept the French Open and Wimbledon singles titles for the second time in three years and will be attempting to become just the seventh man in history to win the career Grand Slam joining Andre Agassi, Don Budge, Roy Emerson, Federer, Rod Laver and Fred Perry.
World No. 2 Novak Djokovic enters the US Open seeking his second grand slam title and first since the 2008 Australian Open.
World No. 3 Roger Federer is seeking his sixth US Open title after having his consecutive streak of US Open titles snapped at five by Juan Martin Del Potro last year. With a victory at the US Open, Federer can surpass Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors for most U.S. men’s singles titles in the Open Era. In 2007, Federer became the only man to win the Olympus US Open Series and US Open titles in the same year.
Following Nadal, Djokovic and Federer on the entry list are No. 4 Andy Murray of Great Britain, the 2008 US Open runner-up; No. 5 Robin Soderling of Sweden, the French Open runner-up in 2009 and 2010; No. 6 Nikolay Davydenko of Russia, a two-time US Open semifinalist; No. 7 Juan Martin Del Potro of Argentina, the defending US Open champion; No. 8 Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic, the 2010 Wimbledon runner-up; No. 9 Andy Roddick of Austin, Texas, the 2003 US Open Champion; and No. 10 Fernando Verdasco of Spain.
In all, there are seven entrants who have won Grand Slam singles titles in their careers, including 2003 French Open champion Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain.
Other American men who received direct entry into this year’s tournament include: No. 19 John Isner of Tampa, Fla.; No. 20 Sam Querrey of Las Vegas; No. 49 Mardy Fish of Tampa, Fla.; No. 75 Robby Ginepri of Kennesaw, Ga.; No. 89 Michael Russell of Houston; and No. 94 Taylor Dent of Bradenton, Fla. Additionally, Tommy Haas of Bradenton, Fla., who recently became a U.S. citizen, received direct entry via a protected ranking.
Bjorn Phau of Germany, ranked No. 98, is the last player accepted directly into the men’s field of 128. In addition to Haas, five other players used protected rankings to gain direct entry, including: David Nalbandian of Argentina; Dmitry Tursunov of Russia; Mario Ancic of Croatia; Maximo Gonzalez of Argentina; and Kristof Vliegen of Belgium. Sixteen more players will gain entry through the US Open Qualifying Tournament, August 24-27, while the remaining eight spots are wild cards awarded by the USTA.
Among the players competing in the US Open Qualifying Tournament will be the winner of the inaugural US Open National Playoffs – Men’s Championship, held this weekend at the site of the Olympus US Open Series event in Atlanta. The USTA created the US Open National Playoffs this year and allowed players 14-and-older, regardless of playing ability or nationality, to vie for a spot in the US Open Qualifying Tournament via one of 16 Sectional Qualifying Tournaments.
The July 19 edition of the ATP World Tour rankings was used to determine the US Open main draw entry list. Seeds will be determined and announced closer to the start of the event.
The 2010 US Open will mark the culmination of the Olympus US Open Series, the six-week summer tennis season linking all major ATP World Tour and Sony Ericsson WTA Tour tournaments in North America to the US Open. The US Open is the highest attended annual sporting event in the world. More than 70 million viewers watched the 2009 US Open on CBS Sports, ESPN2 and Tennis Channel, and international broadcasts reached more than 185 countries. In 2009, Juan Martin Del Potro won his first career Grand Slam title, defeating five-time defending champion Roger Federer in a five-set final. In the women’s singles final, Kim Clijsters culminated her comeback from retirement, defeating Caroline Wozniacki to capture her second US Open title.
The 2010 US Open will be held Monday, August 30 through Sunday, September 12. Tickets for the 2010 US Open can be purchased four ways: 1) at USOpen.org; 2) by calling Ticketmaster at 1-866-OPEN-TIX; 3) at all Ticketmaster outlets; or 4) at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office. American Express is the Official Card of the US Open.