Serbian ace Novak Djokovic and Swiss tennis’ heir apparent Stan Wawrinka have completed the six-star line-up for the Mubadala World Tennis Championship (MWTC).
Djokovic’s 2017 season has been plagued by an elbow injury causing him to opt out of a few tournaments including the US Open.
But the 30-year-old Serb is back and fighting fit. “I am extremely excited to return to Abu Dhabi for the fifth time and take part in the 10th Edition of the Championship,” says the three-time MWTC winner. “It is a huge honour to take part in such a special tournament. The line-up is very strong as always and it will be the perfect way to make my comeback and begin the season. Abu Dhabi is an amazing place and this is going to be a great event for all of the fans.”
Hoping to stop the world number seven from a fairy-tale comeback will be Stan Wawrinka (current world number 9) who has also been out of action for the past few months. The Olympic Champion has had a troubled season due to a knee injury he suffered back in August.
“It is always a pleasure to kick the season off at the beautiful event in Abu Dhabi,” he says. “The fans are amazing there and the draw is as strong as always with a lot of great players. My recovery is going well and I can’t wait to be back on court. I’m working hard together with my team and looking forward to being back.”
But the challenge is not going to be easy for either competitors, as world number one and defending champion Rafael Nadal will be gunning for an impressive fifth MWTC title. Pablo Carreño Busta (ranked 11), Dominic Thiem (ranked 6) and Canadian Milos Raonic (ranked 12) round up the line-up of six.
From Dhs50. Dec 28-30. International Tennis Centre, Zayed Sports City, ticketmaster.ae.