PTT Thailand Open 2011 Main Draw Announced

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The main draw for the PTT Thailand Open 2011 was announced Saturday afternoon with the first round of main draw action getting underway Monday.

The draw was presided over by ATP Supervisor Mr. Thomas Karlberg and made with the assistance of Lawn Tennis Association of Thailand Secretary-General and PTT Group Senior Vice President for Oil Business Unit Mr. Sarun Rangkasiri, BEC-Tero Managing Director Mr. Brian L. Marcar, Tournament Director Mr. Allon Khakshouri and German player Matthias Bachinger.

The top four seeds – world #4 and PTT Thailand Open 2005 finalist Andy Murray, world #8 and 2008 semi-finalist Gael Monfils, world #11 and 2009 Champion Gilles Simon and 2010 Champion Guillermo Garcia-Lopez – all receive byes in the opening round.

The match between fifth seed Ivan Dodig of Croatia and fast-rising Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria will highlight first-round action. Dodig made a strong start early this year, capturing his first career title at the PBZ Zagreb Indoors in January. He recorded the best win of his career so far beating world No.2  Rafael Nadal in the second round of the Montreal Masters last month. The 26-year-old Croatian has continued climbing the world rankings and is currently #37. Twenty-year-old Dimitrov, meanwhile, is among the most promising young players on the ATP World Tour. The talented Bulgarian was junior Wimbledon and US Open champion in 2008 and has been dubbed “Baby Federer” because of the striking similarities between his game and that of Roger Federer. After starting the year just outside the Top 100, he is currently ranked World #65 having reached two quarter-finals in Munich and Eastbourne.

Another notable first-round match will see Donald Young versus Igor Andreev. The young American returns to Bangkok for the third time but has never made it past the second round in his two previous appearances. However, he looks well-placed to go further this year as 2011 has been the best season of his career having reached the fourth round at a major event for the first time at this year’s US Open. He is currently ranked a career-high #55.

For home fans, wildcard Danai Udomchoke, who has played all eight previous editions of PTT Thailand Open,  will face seed #6 and world #39 Italian Fabio Fognini in the first round. Udomchoke has a fair chance to battle his way past Fognini considering the Italian won just three matches on hard court despite his good ranking.

Another wildcard recipient Kittipong Wachiramanowong will play Robin Haase of the Netherlands. It is the third main draw appearance for the 21-year-old Thai. Haase, who is ranked no. 42, won his first career title in Kitzbuhel and almost pulled off a major upset when he lost to Andy Murray in five sets after having a 2-0 lead in the second round of last month’s US Open.

Matches on Monday start at 12 p.m. for the day session and at 7 p.m. for the evening session.  The schedule of play will be released later Sunday.