The entire Round of 16 will be contested Thursday at the Western & Southern Open. The stakes will be high with a quarterfinal berth on the line. Here are our picks of the five matches to watch:
(7) Matteo Berrettini vs (12) Felix Auger-Aliassime
After making first round exits in 2019 – their only previous appearances in Cincinnati – Matteo Berrettini and Felix Auger-Aliassime will have a rematch of their Wimbledon quarterfinal with a spot in the Western & Southern Open final eight on the line. Berrettini has equaled his career high of No. 8 this summer after reaching his maiden Major final at Wimbledon. The Italian has won 12 of his last 13 matches. The 21-year-old Aliassime has already reached eight finals in his career but is still chasing his first title.
(1) Ashleigh Barty vs (14) Victoria Azarenka
It speaks to the depth of the Western & Southern Open field that the defending champion, Victoria Azarenka, will have to face the World No. 1, Ashleigh Barty, in order to reach the quarterfinals. Barty is the top seed for the second straight appearance in Cincinnati, and the Wimbledon champion is looking to improve upon her 2019 semifinal appearance. Azarenka, herself a former World No. 1, is looking to claim her third Western & Southern Open title.
(1) Daniil Medvedev vs Grigor Dimitrov
Both Daniil Medvedev and Grigor Dimitrov are pursuing a second Rookwood Cup during this week’s Western & Southern Open. Medvedev, the top seed, claimed the trophy in 2019, the last time the tournament was held in Cincinnati. He is riding a hot streak having won the title just last week in Toronto. Dimitrov, the 2017 winner, had lost eight of his last 10 matches coming into this week, but has yet to drop a set through two rounds.
(8) Garbiñe Muguruza vs (9) Barbora Krejcikova
Barbora Krejcikova is enjoying a remarkable season and is taking the court in Cincinnati fresh off winning a doubles gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics. In singles action, her year has been highlighted by three titles, including her first Major at the French Open. Muguruza, herself a two-time Major champion as well as a former Western & Southern Open winner, prevailed in their only previous meeting.
(4) Andrey Rublev vs. Gael Monfils
Fresh off hitting the 500-win milestone, Gael Monfils will get right back on court in pursuit of No. 501 when he faces Andrey Rublev. Monfils, who got married on July 16 to WTA player Elina Svitolina, is bidding to reach his second straight quarterfinal after doing so last week in Toronto. Meanwhile, Rublev is just weeks removed from claiming a mixed doubles gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.