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Olympics: Nagal to face Istomin, Sania-Ankita to play Ukraine twins

Tokyo, July 22 (IANS) Indian tennis player Sumit Nagal will face Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin in the opening round of the men’s singles event at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Nagal, who qualified for the Olympics last week after a large number of withdrawals, has been pitted against the Uzbek, ranked 197 in the world, in the draw released on Thursday.

If the 23-year-old Nagal, ranked 160 in the world, wins, his second-round match could take place against second-seeded Daniil Medvedev of Russia. Medvedev, who is playing under the ROC flag, will face Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan in his opening round match.

In women’s doubles, the Indian pair of Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina will face the Kichenok twins — Nadiia and Lyudmyla — of Ukraine in the opening round.

Incidentally, Sania, the six-time Grand Slam champion, had paired up with Nadiia to win the Hobart Open in 2020, her first tournament win after

returning from maternity leave.

The world No. 1 in men’s singles, Novak Djokovic of Serbia, will begin his quest for a gold medal against Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien. Local star Naomi Osaka will open her Olympics campaign against China’s Zheng Saisai.

Great Britain’s Andy Murray, who is the reigning men’s singles Olympics winner, will face Canada’s Felix Auger Aliassime in the first round. The world No. 1 in women’s singles, Australia’s Ashleigh Barty, will face Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo in the first round.

The tennis events at the Tokyo Olympics begin on July 24 and end on August 1 at the Ariake Tennis Park. The Games begin on Friday.



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