India’s Sumit Nagal will take on United States’ Bradley Klahn in the first round of the men’s singles draw at US Open which starts in New York on Monday.
The US Open is the second Major of 2020, a year in which French Open has been postponed and Wimbledon cancelled because of coronavirus pandemic.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran, who was among the alternates and flew to New York, missed the main draw by one spot and will not be part of the bio-secure bubble. Due to the new rules, a doubles player will get in the draw now if a singles spot opens up.
Nagal, ranked 122 in the world currently, takes on Klahn (world No 128) and should he overcome his opponent, faces a daunting task in the second round. Second seed Dominic Thiem, who takes on world No 104 Jaume Munar from Spain, will face the winner of Nagal versus Klahn in the round of 64.
The Indian No 1 was the last man to receive direct entry into the field of 128, which was determined using the latest ATP rankings. This is set to be the first meeting on the ATP tour between Nagal and the 30-year-old left-handed player from Los Angeles.
Nagal returned to competitive action in Prague last week, where he lost to three-time Major winner Stan Wawrinka in the quarter-finals. The Indian had taken the first against Wawrinka but ran out of steam.
The 23-year-old made his Grand Slam debut at US Open last year, coming through the qualifiers to play Roger Federer in the first round and winning the first set. Since then, he has climbed steadily and is the top-ranked Indian at present.
The US Open is being held behind closed doors in New York due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tournament runs form August 31 to September 13.