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  • U.S. Open Series begins in Indianapolis

    7/20/09 4:52 AM | Ricky Dimon
    U.S. Open Series begins in Indianapolis The 2009 U.S. Open Series gets kicked off this week with the onset of the Indianapolis Tennis Championships. Andy Roddick has pulled out with a hip injury, so last year's runner-up Dmitry Tursunov headlines the field as the No. 1 seed.

    Let the 2009 summer hard-court season begin!

    This year's U.S. Open Series is once again being kicked off by the Indianapolis Tennis Championships, the official start to a swing a swing of seven hard-court tournaments in the United States, culminating in the U.S. Open.

    The Indianapolis event is worth only 250 points, and because it is ongoing simultaneously with the ATP 500 tournament in Hamburg, it is almost certainly left with a weaker field than any other during the U.S. Open Series. Andy Roddick recently pulled out with the hip injury he sustained during his loss to Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final, and 2008 champion Gilles Simon is the No. 1 seed in Hamburg.

    That leaves last year's runner-up Dmitry Tursunov as the top seed in Indianapolis. Rounding out the eight seeded players are Dudi Sela, Sam Querrey, Igor Kunitsyn, Benjamin Becker, Yen-Hsun Lu, Marc Gicquel, and Denis Istomin. Notable unseeded threats include Marcos Baghdatis, Robby Ginepri, John Isner, Taylor Dent, and Ernests Gulbis.

    Tursunov could face Dent, who got a wild card into the main draw, in round two. Another interesting second-round clash that could come to fruition is Querrey vs. Rajeev Ram, which would be a rematch of the Newport final. Ram, a wild card entry into Indianapolis, upset Querrey to win the Newport title and is already through to round two after defeated fellow wild card Devin Britton on Sunday.

    The top half of the Indianapilos draw appears to be most difficult--at least potentially--with streaky, talented players like Tursunov, Querrey, Ram, Dent, and Gulbis. In the bottom section of the field, a run by one of the unseeded floaters seems to be a strong possibility. If Sela does not make it to the final, watch out for Baghdatis, Ginepri, Isner, Wayne Odesnik, or Isner's first-round opponent Josselin Ouanna.

    Whoever takes the Indianapolis title will seize an early lead in the U.S. Open Series. Rafael Nadal won last year's series, beating out Andy Murray (Nadal won a tiebreaker after both men finished with 145 points). Juan Martin Del Potro, who won titles in Los Angeles and Washington D.C., came in third place.



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