The 32 draw lines in the panel gradually filled at the draw of the Swiss Indoors in Basel's town hall after the aperitif. President Roger Brennwald (photo) was beaming. A tendency is becoming apparent. The route to the title will not be child's play for any of the starters at Switzerland's tennis highlight. Top-seeded home favourite Roger Federer would meet in the dream final the current title holder Marin Cilic, the Croatian world number 4, he too being a Major winner. All eight seeded players at Basel's tennis festival are in the top thirty of the rankings. This will be a rough steeple race for the stars in their quest for the first prize money in the amount of EUR 395,850.
At the third-largest indoor tournament of the ATP World Tour, it is no surprise that there will be battles between the generations. Master Federer will also be affected by this, who is set to go head-to-head against America's new black gem Frances Tiafoe (ATP 79). And not for the first time this year. At the US Open, the FedEx took five sets, and the score was also “only” 7:6, 6:3 in Miami. Tiafoe’s parents come from Sierra Leone, the son is considered to be a rough diamond at the age of 19.
On Super Monday the organiser will be releasing instead of the injured Rafael Nadal the Canadian belter Denis Shapovalov, among the ranking’s top hundred at the age of 18. Left handed and sporting red curls, he has already beaten Nadal, Tsonga or Del Potro among others this year. Shapovalov will be battling the 29-year-old Japanese veteran Yuichi Sugita, who won his first ATP title this year in Turkey's Antalya in 46 degrees of heat.