January 16, 2021

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ATP Cup lineups confirmed

ATp Cup

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The pared-down ATP Cup has announced the four-man lineups for the 12 nations taking part in the second edition of the event.

Scheduled for Feb. 1-5, 2021 at Melbourne Park, it will be led by Novak Djokovic for Serbia and Rafael Nadal for Spain.

The draw takes place Jan. 20 in Melbourne, while the players are in their semi-quarantine and training for the Aussie summer.

Here are the lineups (obviously, subject to change).

Serbia

Novak Djokovic
Dusan Lajovic
Filip Krajinovic
Nikola Cacic

Spain

Rafael Nadal
Roberto Bautista Agut
Marcel Granollers
Pablo Carreno Busta

Austria

Dominic Thiem
Dennis Novak
Philipp Oswald
Tristan-Samuel Weissborn

Russia

Daniil Medvedev
Andrey Rublev
Aslan Karatsev
Evgeny Donskoy

Greece

Stefanos Tsitsipas
Michail Pervolarakis
Markos Kalovelonis
Petros Tsitsipas

Germany

Alexander Zverev
Jan-Lennard Struff
Kevin Krawietz
Andreas Mies

Argentina

Diego Schwartzman
Guido Pella
Horacio Zeballos
Maximo Gonzalez

Italy

Matteo Berrettini
Fabio Fognini
Simone Bolelli
Andrea Vavassori

Japan

Kei Nishikori
Yoshihito Nishioka
Ben McLachlan
Toshihide Matsui

France

Gael Monfils
Benoit Paire
Nicolas Mahut
Edouard Roger-Vasselin

Canada

Denis Shapovalov
Milos Raonic
Peter Polansky
Steven Diez

Australia

Alex de Minaur
John Millman
John Peers
Luke Saville

As you can see, there are a lot of fairly high-ranked players missing on the various teams.

They are a casualty of the ATP Cup rules, which require the two top-ranked singles players to take the court for every tie (injuries notwithstanding).

As a result, players like Karen Khachanov of Russia, Félix Auger-Aliassime of Canada and Nick Kyrgios of host wild-card national Australia won’t be in the event.

Add to that the exciting young Italian Jannik Sinner.

Team Italy not maximizing ATP Cup

Pierre-Hugues Herbert of France, who is a fine singles player in addition to forming a formidable doubles pairing with Nicolas Mahut, is skipping it – likely because he won’t get any singles practice. So is French No. 3 Ugo Humbert.

The No. 3 and No. 4 players for Italy, which boasts seven players in the top 80 in singles, are Simone Bolelli (No. 509 in singles, No. 68 in doubles) and … Andrea Vavassori (a 25-year-old ranked No. 315 in singles and No. 94 in doubles).

For Russia, Aslan Karatsev is the fourth-best singles player. But it’s a long dropoff from No. 20 (which is Khachanov) and No. 112, which is Karatsev’s ranking.

The fourth player for Russia is Evgeny Donskoy, No. 122 in singles.

As it happens, Khachanov (No. 80) and Rublev (No. 82) are the nation’s top-ranked doubles players. So they don’t have any specialists, per se.

Team Greece is not expected to be a powerhouse at next month’s ATP Cup.

And let’s not get into the Greece situation.

Pervolarakis is at No. 458, Kalovelonis at No. 736 and Petros Tsitsipas, the younger brother of Stefanos, is at No. 960 (No. 775 in doubles).