Watch List: Serena, Sharapova back in action for Fed Cup ties
The Watch List highlights the must-know storylines for the upcoming week in tennis. After two weeks of play at the Australian Open in Melbourne, the tennis season swings right back into action with three ATP 250 events and the first round of Fed Cup, featuring Maria Sharapova, 2015 Australian Open champion Serena Williams and Agnieszka Radwanska.
Defending Zagreb Indoors champion Marin Cilic will miss this year’s tournament due to injury, but fellow Croatian Ivo Karlovic, who defeated No. 1 Novak Djokovic in early January in Doha, heads the field with the top seed.
Last year’s runner up Mikhail Youzhny is also playing in Zagreb for the seventh time, along with Adrian Mannarino, Viktor Troicki and Andreas Seppi, who defeated Roger Federer at the Australian Open last week. No. 3 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez is looking for his fourth title and 18-year-old Croatian Borna Coric is also in Zagreb aiming to win his first.
Open Sud de France (Montpellier)
No. 1 seed Gael Monfils looks to defend his title in Montpellier after a slow start to his season in Melbourne. Last year’s runner up and 2013 champion Richard Gasquet joins Monfils, along with Gilles Simon, third seed Philipp Kohlschreiber and fifth seed Jerzy Janowicz. At the Australian Open last week, Janowicz beat Monfils and could face a rematch against the Frenchman if both men win through to the semifinals.
Ecuador Open Quito
Replacing Vina del Mar on the calendar, the inaugural Ecuador Open Quito is the first clay tournament of the 2015 season and also the first of the Golden Swing, ATP’s five-tournament tour through Latin America. Colombian Santiago Giraldo is the second seed, while Fernando Verdasco and Martin Klizan round out top four in the field.
Fed Cup action is back this weekend, as World Group I and World Group II ties will take place in over eight countries. Serena and Venus Williams and Madison Keys will represent the U.S. against Argentina on indoor clay courts in Buenos Aires, while Spain will take on Romania on indoor hard courts in Galati, with Garbine Muguruza and Simona Halep in action. Dominika Cibulkova will be also in Apeldoorn for Slovakia vs. Netherlands. Alize Cornet, Caroline Garcia, Sara Errani and Camila Giorgi are all in Genoa for Italy vs. France, while Agnieszka Radwanska and Maria Sharapova are in Krakow for Poland vs. Russia.