A look at the 2016 BB&T Atlanta Open Player Field
Steen Kirby, Tennis Atlantic
The 2016 BB&T Atlanta Open, part of the 2016 Emirates US Open Series, is set to feature some of the most exciting young players on the ATP World Tour, they will be joined by a host of American and international players who are fan favorites, as the 250 level tournament is slated to have its best player field ever. Tournament director Eddie Gonzalez announced that Australian #1 Nick Kyrgios will be playing in Atlanta for the first time, joined by Borna Coric, Taylor Fritz, Lucas Pouille, and Kyle Edmund, all talented young players that should be creating highlights on the ATP tour for years to come.
The 21 year old Kyrgios reached the semifinals of the Miami Masters this year and won his first ATP title in February, he’s set to do well at Wimbledon as well given his previous grand slam exploits which included the 2014 Wimbledon quarterfinals. Coric has burst into the top 50 this season and is still seeking his first ever ATP title. The 19 year old Croatian has two ATP finals this season.
Fritz joining the player field continues the tradition of young American talent taking part in the BB&T Atlanta Open. The 18 year old pulled off a shocker when he reached the final of the 250 tournament in Memphis, which made him the youngest American to reach an ATP final in history.
Pouille is 22, and he recently improved his ranking into the top 30 while still seeking his first ever ATP title. Pouille has an ATP final this season, and also reached the semifinals of the Rome Masters tournament.
Edmund is currently ranked just inside the top 70, and like the others, he’s making his Atlanta debut. After a pair of challenger titles thus far this season, he’s demonstrated encouraging signs of his progress as the British #2 singles player at just 21 years old.
The BB&T Atlanta Open also features the return of big servers John Isner and Kevin Anderson, Isner has won the title in Atlanta three consecutive times, and prior to that he reached a pair of finals in his home tournament.The American #1 loves Atlanta and it’s always the one of the highlights of his tennis season. Anderson was a finalist in 2013 and after struggling with injuries this season he should be eager to return to a tournament where he has good vibes. Atlanta native Donald Young also returns to his home tournament hoping more success than he’s had in previous years. University of Georgia senior Austin Smith, an Atlanta native, has also been given a wild card to make his ATP main draw debut after leading the Bulldogs to success.
Exciting shotmakers are also joining the player field this year, Benoit Paire‘s backhand and Fernando Verdasco’s forehand are two of the best shots in tennis, and Alexandr Dolgopolov is incredibly creative with his tennis. Verdasco, a former top 10 player, has an ATP title this season.
Other players slated to participate include Jeremy Chardy, Albert Ramos, the doubles great Marcel Granollers, Adrian Mannarino, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, John Millman, and Diego Schwartzman, as the Atlanta Open has a very international flavor this year.
The BB&T Atlanta Open will feature a special 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games gold medal rematch between Andre Agassi, who won Gold, and Sergi Bruguera who took home the Silver medal. 20 years after their match, both players are eager to play once again in an exhibition for fans to enjoy.
Held at Atlantic Station in the heart of Atlanta July 30-August 7, you can learn more about the BB&T Atlanta Open and purchase tickets at http://www.bbtatlantaopen.com