Murray, Wawrinka, Tiafoe, And Donaldson Receive Cincy Wild Cards
CINCINNATI – A three-time Major champion, Stan Wawrinka, and a pair of American rising stars – Jared Donaldson and Frances Tiafoe – have been awarded wild cards for the 2018 Western & Southern Open. These three players will be part of the 56-player field when the tournament takes place August 11-19 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio.
Wawrinka has reached the semifinals once and a pair of quarterfinals during his career at the Western & Southern Open. The Swiss owns a title at three of the four Majors, lacking only a Wimbledon win for a career Grand Slam. An Olympic gold medalist in doubles in 2008, Wawrinka has won 16 career titles and been ranked as high as No. 3 on the ATP World Tour. He underwent knee surgery last August, and missed three months of action earlier this season.
Donaldson had a breakout performance at the 2017 Western & Southern Open, reaching his first ATP World Tour quarterfinal before he fell to countryman John Isner. The 21-year-old Donaldson went a step further this spring, reaching his first ATP semifinal at the tournament in Acapulco. Donaldson, who is originally from Rhode Island, closed his 2017 season by participating in the ATP World Tour Next Gen Finals in Milan.
Tiafoe recorded the best win of his career in terms of ranking last year in Cincinnati, defeating No. 7 Alexander Zverev in the second round. The 20-year-old claimed his first title earlier this year in Delray Beach, becoming the youngest American to win on the ATP World Tour since 19-year-old Andy Roddick won the Houston title in 2002. Tiafoe, who is originally from Maryland, also reached the final this year in Estoril and this week reached a career high ranking of No. 41.
These players join the previously announced Andy Murray, a two-time Western & Southern Open champion and former World No. 1, as wild cards into the ATP event.
The wild card entrants join a field that includes seven-time W&S Open champion Roger Federer, defending champion Grigor Dimitrov, five-time finalist Novak Djokovic and the current ATP No. 1, Rafael Nadal.
The ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament runs concurrently at the W&S Open with a WTA Premier 5 event. The WTA field includes two-time champion Serena Williams, defending champion Garbiñe Muguruza, former champion Maria Sharapova, two-time finalist Angelique Kerber and World No. 1 Simona Halep.