Men's Qualifying Begins

Qualifying for the 2010 Western & Southern Financial Group Masters begins Saturday at the Lindner Family Tennis Center at 10 a.m.

The field for qualifying this year is deep and is full of players who could cause some damage if they make it into the main draw.

The top seed in the draw is Andrey Golubev, who is ranked No. 37 in the world after he won his first career title in Hamburg just last month. He will face Italy’s Fabio Fognini on Saturday.

Another player to have contested an ATP World Tour final in 2010 who is in the qualifying draw is Arnaud Clement. The Frenchman lost to John Isner in the Auckland final in January.

A semifinalist in Cincinnati in 2000, Clement finished as the runner up at the Australian Open in 2001. Clement will play Ramon Delgado Saturday.

Three players with NCAA men’s singles titles will be in action on Saturday. Benjamin Becker, who played at Baylor and claimed the NCAA title in 2004, will face Gilles Muller.

Somdev Devvarman won back-to-back NCAA titles for the University of Virginia in 2007 and 2008, and on Saturday will play Marco Chiudinelli.

Devin Britton, the 2009 NCAA winner from Ole Miss, will play Florent Serra.

Sixteen countries are represented in the qualifying draw, and the field includes eight Americans. Taylor Dent comes in as the winningest American in the qualifying draw, as he owns four career ATP titles.

A couple of local hopes will be in the draw. Former Kentucky standout Jesse Witten, who reached the NCAA singles final in 2002, will take on fellow American Michael Russell while Indianapolis native Rajeev Ram, who won and NCAA team title at the University of Illinois, will play Germany’s Simon Greul.

The other Americans in the field are Britton, Bobby Reynolds, Tim Smyczek and Ryan Sweeting.