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DUBAI: The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships will welcome three former champions for the ATP 500 tournament later this month.

Reigning champion Daniil Medvedev – a recent Australian Open finalist – and 2022 winner Andrey Rublev will be joined in the emirate by Andy Murray, a two-time Wimbledon champion and Olympic gold medallist.

Medvedev will have his eye on more success in Dubai, with Italian sensation Jannik Sinner stunning the Russian with an epic five-set comeback win to clinch his first Grand Slam in Melbourne last month.

Medvedev, 27, will be looking to build on a remarkable 2023 season, during which he won five titles, reached two Grand Slam finals, and ended the year as world No. 3.

Rublev, meanwhile, reached the 50-wins mark for the third straight season in 2023, while breaking new ground by claiming his first ATP Masters 1000 title in Monte Carlo. The 26-year-old also lifted the Bastad trophy with a straight sets victory over Casper Ruud, the third time in four years that he has claimed multiple tour-level crowns.

It is two years since Murray’s last appearance in Dubai and seven since he became the first Briton to win Dubai’s annual tennis showpiece. He will join three of the world’s top 10 ATP players when the tournament’s 32nd edition takes place from Feb. 26 to March 2.

Murray, the Scotland-born three-time Grand Slam winner, is set to make his eighth appearance at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, with world No. 8 Hubert Hurkacz, the 2021 Wimbledon semi-finalist, also part of the experienced line-up.

Colm McLoughlin, executive vice chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free, said: “We are thrilled to have three former champions in Andy, Andrey, and Daniil participating, further underlining the regard in which this tournament is held.”

Other notable names who will feature in the men’s tournament include last year’s Australian Open semi-finalist and current world No. 18 Karen Khachanov, five-time ATP Tour singles title winner Adrian Mannarino, currently ranked No. 17 in the world, and former Wimbledon finalist and Australian Open semi-finalist Milos Raonic.

Salah Tahlak, joint chief operating officer of Dubai Duty Free and tournament director of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Andy, Andrey, and Daniil back to Dubai this year.

“They are all extremely popular figures among the tennis fraternity, so having these types of players competing in the tournament is great news for us.”

Meanwhile, a star-studded Women’s Tennis Association line-up will see 17 of the world’s top 20 players descend on Dubai for the 24th edition of the WTA Tour tournament – recently awarded permanent WTA 1000 status.

Nine of the world’s top 10 female players will be in the emirate for the latest instalment of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships; world No. 1 Iga Swiatek, No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka, fresh from securing her second successive Australian Open crown, and No. 3 Coco Gauff lead the impressive pack.

Source: Arab News

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