2018 Preview: BB&T Atlanta Open

June 18, 2018 09:00 AM
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Where: Atlantic Station, 1380 Atlantic Dr NW, Atlanta, Ga.

When: July 21-29

Defending champions: John Isner (singles); Mike Bryan and Bob Bryan (doubles)

Tournament website: https://www.bbtatlantaopen.com/

History

The BB&T Atlanta Open will serve as the first stop on the US Open Series calendar again in 2018.

The tournament was originally held in Indianapolis between 1988 and 2009 and moved to Atlanta after the USTA and USTA Southern section bought the rights to the event.

Americans have dominated the tournament since its move to Georgia, winning seven of the eight singles titles. Three of the eight finals have been all-American affairs, including last year, when John Isner beat Ryan Harrison for the championship.

The BB&T Atlanta Open has been Isner’s personal playground. In the eight years that the event has been played in Atlanta, Isner has played in seven finals.

2017 Recap

Isner kept up his dominance in Atlanta, winning his fourth title in five years. The 6-foot-10 University of Georgia product has played on championship Sunday every year since 2013, his only loss coming in the 2016 final against Nick Kyrgios, the only non-American to win the title since it moved to Atlanta.

Isner, the No. 2 seed, won all four matches in straight sets, defeating Vasek Pospisil of Canada, Lukas Lacko of Slovakia, No. 3 seed Gilles Muller of the Netherlands and fellow countryman and No. 4 seed Ryan Harrison.

The top seed, Jack Sock, lost in the quarterfinals to fifth-seeded Kyle Edmund of Great Britain.

The 2017 tournament also saw an impressive performance from Georgia Tech standout Chris Eubanks. The wild-card entrant defeated two Americans, up-and-coming Taylor Fritz and Jared Donaldson, before losing to eventual finalist Harrison in the quarterfinals.

In doubles, the Bryan brothers proved there’s still plenty left in the tank by riding their No. 1 seeding all the way to another title. The twins dropped just one set all week, overcoming the Aussie duo of John-Patrick Smith and Matt Reid in the opening round, 4-6, 6-4 [10-7].

2018 Preview

Isner returns to Atlantic Station looking to stamp his mark on the US Open Series once again, but there will be no shortage of challengers when action in the 32-player field gets underway.

The most successful player in tournament history will have to face the likes of Davis Cup teammate Jack Sock, 2016 champion Nick Kyrgios and rising star Frances Tiafoe. Last year’s runner-up Harrison has also committed to the event, as have 2017 entrants Donaldson and Fritz. Big-serving Ivo Karlovic and fan favorites Marcos Baghdatis and Mikhail Youzhny are scheduled to take part in the main draw, and the Bryan brothers are slated to defend their doubles title, assuming both are healthy.

Prior to the start of the main draw, 2017 US Open women’s champion Sloane Stephens and finalist Madison Keys will play an exhibition as part of Kids’ Weekend.

In previous years, other notable entrants have included 2003 US Open champion and former world No. 1 Andy Roddick, two-time Grand Slam champion Lleyton Hewitt, 2017 US Open men’s finalist Kevin Anderson, Olympian Mardy Fish and former world No. 3 Grigor Dimitrov.

Click here to see the complete list of players competing.

Fun Fact

Isner has a career 27-4 record in Atlanta, having won 19 of his past 20 matches. In addition to four titles, he also reached the final in each of his first two years in Atlantic Station, losing each to Fish in three sets after winning the opener. He holds a number of Atlanta Open records, including wins (27), finals (seven), titles (four), and consecutive titles (three).

- Ashley Marshall

 

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