The 2018 Lyon Open tournament is the ATP’s tournament other than Geneva at this point on the calendar. The ATP Tour had been in Lyon as a hardcourt event for over 20 years, through 2009. Now it is back as a clay event in its second edition following last year’s initial return to the tour schedule. Lyon is, along with Geneva, the final tune-up before Roland Garros. This ATP 250 event is the highlight of the week on either the WTA or ATP Tours because of the presence of one player in the field. Odds courtesy of BetDSI Sportsbook.
The competition in the 28-player main draw begins on Sunday, May 20.
Event: Open Parc Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes Lyon
Category: ATP 250 Series
Date: May 20 – 26, 2017
Location: Parc de la Tete d’Or – Lyon, France
With a prize money allotment of just over 501,000 Euros, this tournament is competitive with the other ATP 250 events. The prize money total has increased by almost 20,000 Euros relative to last year, when this event returned to the tour as a clay-court event. With three players in the top 20 (as of May 14, when the seedings were determined for this event – the rankings for players will have changed as of May 21, when this tournament moves into its second day of play), this is a strong field. The first year of the renewed event, in 2017, clearly laid a successful foundation for 2018.
Champion – 250
Runner-up – 150
Semifinal – 90
Quarterfinal – 45
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga def. Tomas Berdych, 7-6, 7-5
Dominic Thiem is a French Open contender. Many will wonder what he is doing in Lyon instead of resting up for the French Open. He thinks he needs to work on the mechanics of his game and find solutions after he lost his first – and only – match in Rome this year to Fabio Fognini on Wednesday. Thiem beat Rafael Nadal in Madrid. He was the last man to beat Nadal on clay in 2017 in Rome, so he is obviously very talented on clay. It is easily his most comfortable surface. Thiem is looking to the example of Stan Wawrinka, who played the Geneva Open in 2015 the week before the French Open and went on to win the Roland Garros title, his second career Grand Slam championship. All eyes will be on Thiem in Lyon.
John Isner is the second seed in this tournament, behind Thiem. He lost early in Rome to Albert Ramos-Vinolas, but he went to the quarterfinals in Rome and now hopes to fine-tune his serve for the French Open, where he might be able to make the fourth round.
Jack Sock has not won back-to-back matches in 2018 – and we’re in the latter half of May. It has been a terrible year for the American, who won the Bercy Masters last year and made the semifinal round of the ATP Finals, the year-end tournament in London. He can use this small-level event to build winning form.
Hyeon Chung has been injured for most of the past two months, ever since he lost in Miami to Isner on hardcourts. Chung has to test his body and see if he is ready for the French Open. If not, he should withdraw from the tournament as soon as possible.
Gael Monfils is also in Lyon. He is not one of the top four seeds, meaning he won’t get a first-round bye, but he will try to generate momentum just the same and see if he can get on a roll before Roland Garros starts.
Parc de la Tete d’Or
The intimate garden park in Lyon offers a spacious, tucked-away place for this new tournament. Within the park is the tennis village, which has made room for a 4,000-seat central court and three outside courts. Lyon had hosted an ATP Tour event from 1987 through 2009, but that was an indoor hardcourt event in a building called the Palais des Sports.
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