January 01, 2016
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has been forced to make a withdrawal from the eighth Mubadala World Tennis Championship taking place this weekend, December 31st – January 2nd at Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi. After playing the first match of the tournament against world number seven Ferrer, Tsonga confirmed his withdrawal due to a right forearm injury.
World number 17 Feliciano Lopez, a crowd favourite in Abu Dhabi who made his first appearance at the annual Championship last year, replaces Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and will compete in the fifth and sixth place play-off against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson on day two of the tournament. Lopez arrives in Abu Dhabi off the back of a season that saw him reach the quarter finals of the US Open for the first time in his career, where he eventually succumbed to the power of world number 1 Novak Djokovic. His appearance at Flushing Meadows marked his 55th consecutive outing in a Grand Slam main draw and he enters 2016 with an impressive 33 wins over top 10 players.
Following Lopez v Anderson, the New Year celebrations will continue with a Spanish showdown between an in-form David Ferrer and 14-time Grand Slam winner, Rafael Nadal. New Year’s Day at Zayed Sports City will come to a close with the third match of the day when Milos Raonic takes on reigning French Open champ, Stan Wawrinka.