US Open 2021 Draws: 3 big matches to watch out for in men’s singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray

US Open 2021: Five big matches to watch out for in men's singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray; Kyrgios, Medvedev, Gasquet
US Open 2021: Five big matches to watch out for in men's singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray; Kyrgios, Medvedev, Gasquet

US Open 2021 Draws: 3 big matches to watch out for in men’s singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray- The 2021 US Open presents some fascinating first-round encounters, featuring some of the game’s hottest players, most interesting personalities and enduring crowd favorites in both the women’s and men’s draws. While it’s tough to pick just a few standout matches, here are three of the best openers on the men’s side.

US Open 2021: 3 big matches to watch out for in men’s singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray

US Open 2021 Draws: Novak Djokovic, Daniil Medvedev lead US Open men’s singles draw

US Open 2021 Draws: Ash Barty tops US Open women’s singles draw; Naomi Osaka, Victoria Azarenka, Coco Gauff in bottom half

US Open 2021 Draws: Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) (3) v Andy Murray (GBR)

This encounter has “popcorn match” written all over it. Murray, 34, is returning to competitive play after a frustrating series of back and hip surgeries, but the former World No. 1 and three-time major champ has shown recent signs of the old game coming together. Muzzah made it to the third round at Wimbledon and played 13th-ranked Hubert Hurkacz tough last week in Cincinnati. Murray’s lone US Open title was back in 2012, but the British father of four will have massive crowd support, and he still has the kind of game that could test Tsitsipas.

The 23-year-old Greek has rocketed to a career-high ranking of No. 3 while notching the most match wins on tour (48) in 2021. Along with Alexander Zverev, Tsitsipas is considered one of the Next Gen’s greatest hopes to win his first major. He reached his first Slam final at the French Open earlier this year, where he had Novak Djokovic on the ropes — up two-sets-to-love before the wheels came off. Tsitsipas will be looking to avenge last year’s heartbreaking five-set US Open loss to Borna Cornic, in which Stefanos squandered six match points.

US Open 2021 Draws: Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) (18) v Nick Kyrgios (AUS)

The Aussie Kyrgios is the talented, mercurial, personality-plus superstar. Bautista Agut is the quiet, steady Spaniard who gets the most out of his no-frills hardcourt game and can give big hitters fits. With his firepower and unpredictability, Kyrgios is the most dangerous unseeded floater in the men’s draw. The contrast in styles and temperaments should make for an entertaining affair. If anyone can keep his cool against Kyrgios, its’s the unflappable RBA. Kyrgios, 26, has played little over the last year, choosing to sit out most tournaments in favor of remaining home in Australia rather than travel during the lingering pandemic and risk having to quarantine. In that time, his ranking has dropped to No. 85.

US Open 2021 Draws: Daniil Medvedev (RUS) (2) v. Richard Gasquet (FRA)

With Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and last year’s champion Dominic Thiem all out of this year’s US Open with injuries, the No. 2 seeded Medvedev —runner-up to Nadal here in 2019 — perhaps poses the greatest threat to Novak Djokovic’s hopes for a record 21st major. The Russian is most at home on hard courts, where his creative game and long, loping strides from deep behind the baseline befuddle opponents.

Medvedev, 25, proved his game is right where it needs to be heading into the US Open, winning the title at the ATP Master’s 1000 in Toronto and reaching the semifinal in Cincinnati, where he ran out of gas in the heat against a surging Andrey Rublev. Gasquet, the flashy Frenchman, hadn’t had great results this year until this week: the former Top 10 player upset third-seeded Daniel Evans in Winston-Salem and is into the quarterfinals. Gasquet, 35, is a fluid all-court player who still owns one of the game’s pre-eminent one-handed backhands. While Medvedev should prevail, this will be an intriguing stylistic encounter and early test for the Russian.

US Open 2021: 3 big matches to watch out for in men’s singles in round 1 ft. Tsitsipas vs Murray

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