The 2022 edition of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament got underway this week. The Rotterdam-based ATP 500 event will see a plethora of talent compete, including the defending champion Andrey Rublev. A prize pool of £1,141,530 is up for grabs, and Rublev will be defending his trophy against an elite set of competition.
The indoor world tennis tournament began its qualifiers on Feb 5, but the playoffs start on Feb 7 and conclude on Feb.13. Familiar names such as Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andy Murray, and Auger-Aliassime are set to compete to dethrone last year’s winner Andrey Rublev.
The number one seed Stefanos Tsitsipas will clash with the talented Davidovich Fokina in the first round, which offers up an entertaining second round as Ivashka and Harris will lay in wait.
Number two seed Andrey Rublev faces a more straightforward task in Henri Laaksonen. The No. 86 ranked Swiss national had to qualify at the weekend and will notably enter a tough match on tired legs.
ABN AMRO Tournament Odds
Russia’s Daniil Medvedev is the oddsmakers favourite to win the tournament at 7/4. Still, his appearance comes after reaching the Australian Open men’s singles final in Melbourne less than a week ago. We should expect the indoor event to take its toll on Medvedev, who’s barely getting over a final’s appearance from seven days back.
Stefanos Tsitsipas, with odds of 9/2, is a trustworthy gamble; the hometown favourite has four title successes on indoor courts and will want to impress his fellow Rotterdam nationals. In addition, Caesars is offering all new sports bettors a promo code that can further extend your betting value.
Notably, the Australian open has caused multiple withdrawals from the ABN AMRO, and only eight of the top-20 players will be participating. For this reason, a chance of success becomes easier for experienced players such as Andy Murray, who’s priced at 33/1 – the outsiders bet that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Andy Murray’s Return
The UK’s former world No.1 Andy Murray received a wild card entry, and his drawing was particularly unfortunate, as he’ll face Alexander Bublik in round 1. To make matters worse, should Murray qualify, he’ll be faced with a familiar foe in Auger-Aliassime.
The 33-year-old former 3-time Grand Slam winner from Scotland made a late decision to participate in the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament, with many sacrifices to make a comeback to the ATP Tour. He intends on skipping clay-court meetings this term, including Roland Garros, giving himself the best opportunity to perform at his best in 2022.
“The year I lost to Felix [Auger-Aliassime] at the US Open in 2020, I never really recovered from that match, and the clay made the issue worse,” Murray commented during his pre-tournament press conference.
“Then last year, I had some issues at the beginning of the year around Miami, and again, the clay didn’t help either. I’ve spoken to my team about that, and this year, while I’m feeling good and healthy, I don’t really want to take that risk.”
Murray intends to return to clay eventually, but his main preparations focus on the grass season, where he’s notably a former two-time Wimbledon champ. “It’s not that I wouldn’t play on clay in the future,” Murray said.
“It’s just that last year I was really close to not playing the grass season, and thankfully I started to feel better right before Wimbledon. I will still try to compete for a little during that period, I won’t do anything, but that’s my plan just now.
“It allows me to rest, recover, work on my fitness and not take any risks.”
Whilst playing in the ABN Amro this month, long-term friend Daniel Vallverdu and current coach of Grand Slam title holder Stan Wawrinka will be assisting Murray from the player box in Rotterdam. A rekindled friendship that initially helped Murray during 2 of his 3 Grand Slam title successes.
“Stan has been rehabbing for quite a long time and is hopefully coming back to the Tour in the near future, but he agreed for Dani to come and help me for a few weeks,” Murray said. “In the short term, I will probably have people around that I’m familiar with. That’s quite important for me, and obviously, Dan and I have been close friends since we were 15 years old. Now he has quite a lot of experience on tour working with many different players, so I think for the short-term, it’s a perfect option and solution for me.”