With the Australian Open delayed until February 8, host broadcaster Nine Network has confirmed the times of Tennis on Nine with its coverage of lead-up events in Melbourne and Adelaide.
Tennis on Nine: ATP Cup
Twelve countries, featuring the world’s best tennis players, will compete in the second edition of the ATP Cup, to be broadcast live on Nine, 9Gem and 9Now on Tuesday, February 2, from 11.30am AEDT.
The tournament will be hosted by Nine’s Nick McArdle and Erin Molan with the tennis on Nine preceding the Australian Open.
The competition sees the sport’s best players putting their individual rivalries to one side as they compete for their country in the quest to triumph in the ATP Cup.
Top seed Serbia, headlined by world No.1 Novak Djokovic, will lead Group A, which also includes Germany and Canada. At the inaugural tournament last year, Serbia won the ATP Cup in Sydney.
Second seed Spain, runner-up to Serbia in 2020, has drawn Group B, which includes Greece and host country Australia. World No.2 Rafael Nadal again leads the way for his country.
Austria, headed by world No.3 Dominic Thiem, will have to advance through Group C against Italy and France. And in Group D, fourth seed Russia, headlined by reigning Nitto ATP Finals champion Daniil Medvedev, face Argentina and Japan.
Alex de Minaur has once again been named to lead Team Australia. He will be joined by John Millman, John Peers and Luke Saville.
De Minaur last year famously took Nadal to three sets in a thrilling match before Australia bowed out to Spain in the semi-finals.
The Aussies will face Spain in the round-robin stage this time around, along with Greece who have world No.6 Stefanos Tsitsipas leading the way.
This year’s five-day event will be played at Melbourne Park alongside two ATP 250 events, the Great Ocean Road Open and the Murray River Open. Following the group stage, the four group winners will advance to the knockout semi-finals to continue battling for the prestigious title.
The 2021 ATP Cup will feature 12 of the Top 13 players in the ATP Rankings. Each country is represented by four players, with each tie comprising two singles matches and one doubles match.
Serbia: Novak Djokovic, Dusan Lajovic, Filip Krajinovic, Nikola Cacic
Germany: Alexander Zverev, Jan-Lennard Struff, Kevin Krawietz, Andreas Mies
Canada: Denis Shapovalov, Milos Raonic, Peter Polansky, Steven Diez
Spain: Rafael Nadal, Roberto Bautista Agut, Marcel Granollers, Pablo Carreno Busta
Greece: Stefanos Tsitsipas, Michail Pervolarakis, Markos Kalovelonis, Petros Tsitsipas
Australia: Alex de Minaur, John Millman, John Peers, Luke Saville
Austria: Dominic Thiem, Dennis Novak, Philipp Oswald, Tristan-Samuel Weissborn
Italy: Matteo Berrettini, Fabio Fognini, Simone Bolelli, Andrea Vavassori
France: Gael Monfils, Benoit Paire, Nicolas Mahut, Edouard Roger-Vasselin
Russia: Daniil Medvedev, Andrey Rublev, Aslan Karatsev, Evgeny Dosnkoy
Argentina: Diego Schwartzman, Guido Pella, Horacio Zeballos, Maximo Gonzalez
Japan: Kei Nishikori, Yoshihito Nishioka, Ben McLachlan, Toshihide Matsui
Tennis on Nine: Adelaide Superslam
Australia’s world No.1 Ash Barty, will play in A Day at the Drive, the official curtain-raiser to the long-awaited 2021 Summer of Tennis featuring the Australian Open.
Hosted by Todd Woodbridge, A Day at the Drive – the “Adelaide Superslam” – is a one-off event to be held at Memorial Drive Tennis Centre in Adelaide on Friday, January 29, and broadcast live on Nine and 9Now from 1.30pm AEDT.
A Day at the Drive will feature a total of eight players, including Serena Williams (USA), Rafael Nadal (ESP), Novak Djokovic (SRB), Dominic Thiem (AUT), Simona Halep (ROU), Naomi Osaka (JPN) and 19-year-old world No.36 Jannik Sinner (ITA).
Collectively, the field boasts the winners of 67 Grand Slam men’s and women’s singles titles.
A Day at the Drive starts the summer of tennis on Nine and will be staged over two sessions with reduced venue capacity in line with government requirements to ensure the safety of all patrons.
Each session will consist of two singles matches. The schedule of play will be announced in the coming days.
“I am looking forward to playing my first match for the 2021 season in Adelaide,” Barty said.
“I have fond memories from the Adelaide International last year and it will be great to get back on court here for A Day at the Drive.”
The group of international players arrived in Adelaide earlier this month and have undertaken mandatory 14-day quarantine. All players and their support teams arriving for the Summer of Tennis are over and above the numbers of Australians returning to the country during the pandemic.