• Tsonga, Isner on collision course in Madrid

    5/6/12 10:03 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Tsonga, Isner on collision course in Madrid With Andy Murray out of Madrid, Jo-Wilfried steps in as the No. 4 seed. A wide-open third section of the draw also includes John Isner, Juan Martin Del Potro, and Alexandr Dolgopolov.

    Jo-Wilfried Tsonga recently passed David Ferrer for the No. 5 ranking in the world and it has already paid off at the Mutua Madrid Open. Andy Murray is out due to a back problem, so Tsonga jumps in as the No. 4 seed and is the highest-ranked player in the third section of the draw.

    World No. 10 John Isner snagged the eighth seed and with it a first-round bye thanks to the absences of Murray and Mardy Fish. Isner and Tsonga faced each other in a crucial Davis Cup singles rubber between France and the United States last month in Monte Carlo, with Isner clinching the tie for the visiting Americans via a four-set victory.

    There is a long way to go before a potential Tsonga-Isner quarterfinal and the chances of it taking place are slim because this quarter is deep from top to bottom. Estoril champion Juan Martin Del Potro is seeded 10th, Munich champion Marin Cilic could face Isner in round two after a meeting with clay-court specialist Albert Montanes, and Belgrade champion Andreas Seppi makes it all three of Sunday's title winners in this section.

    Isner and Del Potro are on course for a third-round showdown, while Tsonga's nearest seed is Alexandr Dolgopolov. The Frenchman will open against either Ryan Harrison or Sergiy Stakhovsky.

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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