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Cream of crop set to do battle in Beijing

By China Daily | China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-28 08:08

Cream of crop set to do battle in Beijing

Andy Murray of Great Britain plays against Andreas Seppi of Italy during China Open men's singles first round in Beijing, China, Oct 4, 2016. [Photo/Agencies]

A golden line-up will grace the China Open during the Golden Week holiday period in Beijing this fall.

Asia's premier combined tennis event has again assembled a star-studded field, with Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Alexander Zverev and Grigor Dimitrov the pick of the men's draw, while Maria Sharapova, Karolina Pliskova, Garbine Muguruza, Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki are the main attractions in the women's competition.

As one of only four WTA Premier Mandatory events, the outdoor hardcourt tournament never fails to attract the cream of the women's game, with the seesaw battle for the world No 1 spot adding an intriguing subplot to proceedings.

Current No 1 Pliskova, reigning Wimbledon champ Muguruza, French Open winner Jelena Ostapenko and the legendary Venus Williams will all be present at the National Tennis Center - although the latter's sister, Serena, will be missing due to her pregnancy.

Two former top-ranked women also light up the field - the back-in-form Wozniacki and Sharapova, who is returning from her doping ban.

Home hopes will rest with Peng Shuai, who has one WTA title to her name this season, and Zhang Shuai, who reached the third round at Roland Garros this year.

Fifteen-time Grand Slam winner Nadal, who is enjoying a resurgence and has just returned to world No 1, and defending champion Murray take top billing in the men's event, which also boasts the popular Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Tomas Berdych and Fernando Verdasco.

Hoping to dethrone the old guard will be the vanguard of the so-called 'Next-Gen' - German 20-year-old Zverev, Bulgarian Dimitrov, Australian Nick Kyrgios and American Jack Sock.

Zverev has clinched two Masters crowns this year while Dimitrov claimed his first Master title in Cincinnati earlier this month.

Tickets are now on sale for the event which takes place from Sept 24 to Oct 8.

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