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Italian Open Tennis: Draws, dates, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, but where are Emma Raducanu and Andy Murray?

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All you need to know ahead of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome including draws, dates, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Iga Swiatek, but where are Emma Raducanu and Andy Murray?

The third clay-court ATP Masters 1000 event of the season will see the world’s best players compete at the Masters 1000 tennis tournament, held at the iconic Foro Italico.

World No 1 Novak Djokovic returns to action in preparation for the French Open, with ‘King of Clay’ Rafael Nadal hoping to continue building up to Roland Garros at the tournament where he is a 10-time champion.

Djokovic opted to miss the Madrid Open and has only played one clay tournament in Monte Carlo, where he made the semi-finals.

Spaniard Nadal started his clay comeback in Barcelona, losing in the second round, and then played in Madrid, where he made the last 16 before losing to Jiri Lehecka in an emotional farewell.

Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka, Coco Gauff, Elena Rybakina, former two-time champion Elina Svitolina, Naomi Osaka and Angelique Kerber make up a strong women’s draw.

However, home favourite Jannik Sinner (hip), Carlos Alcaraz (forearm) and Brits Raducanu and Murray will not be taking part in the Italian capital this year but Murray has been practising on clay as he continues his recovery from an ankle injury.

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Colin Fleming and Anne Keothavong debate whether Emma Raducanu should play French Open qualifying after her disappointing opening-round loss at the Madrid Open

Raducanu’s current plans are to compete in Strasbourg, but she is also entered into qualifying for the French Open unless she receives a wild card into the main draw.

The Italian Open draw will be held on Monday, May 6 at midday.

When is the Italian Open?

Daniil Medvedev of Russia kisses the trophy after defeating Denmark's Holger Rune during the men's final tennis match at the Italian Open tennis tournament in Rome, Italy, Sunday, May 21, 2023. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
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Daniil Medvedev defeated Holger Rune to win the Italian Open last year

Qualifying starts on Monday, May 6 ahead of the main draw on Wednesday, May 8.

The finals will be held on the weekend of May 18.

As with the Madrid Open, the 32 seeds get a first-round bye so they enter the tournament in the second round.

Play will start at 10am UK time every day until Thursday, May 16 when it begins at midday. There will be evening sessions starting at 6pm each day until finals weekend, when play starts at midday on both days.

The Dunlop Fort Clay Court ball will be used at the tournament.

What is the schedule?

Qualifying: Monday, May 6 and Tuesday, May 7

Main Draw: Wednesday, May 8 – Sunday, May 19

Singles Finals: Saturday, May 18, not before 5pm & Sunday, May 19 not before 5pm

Who are the Brits taking part?

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Katie Boulter and Alex de Minaur head to the park to discuss the early stages of their relationship and how life has changed in the past year

Katie Boulter headlines the women’s singles draw and enters as the only Brit in main draw action.

The British No 1 was narrowly beaten by 19-year-old American Robin Montgomery in three sets at the Madrid Open.

Boulter will be looking to string together a deep run in Rome ahead of her maiden main draw appearance at Roland Garros in just a matter of weeks.

On the men’s side, Cameron Norrie is set to play off the back of a successful few weeks in Spain having reached the quarter-final of the ATP 500 event in Barcelona before going on to make the third round at the Madrid Open.

Jack Draper will be joining Norrie in the main draw, after recently making the quarter-final at the BMW Open in Munich.

Dan Evans could also be set for a return to the court, after a calf injury forced him to miss the ATP 1000 event in Madrid.

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British No 1 Boulter reveals which five guests she would invite to a dinner party

Who are the defending champions?

Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan poses with the champions trophy after defeating Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine in the womens singles final on Day Thirteen of the Internazionali BNL D'Italia at Foro Italico on May 20, 2023 in Rome, Italy (Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images)
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Elena Rybakina will be defending the women’s singles title at Foro Italico

Daniil Medvedev won the 2023 singles title, his first clay-court trophy, with a 7-5 7-5 victory against Holger Rune.

Elena Rybakina won the second WTA 1000 title of her career last year, defeating Anhelina Kalinina in the final 6-4 1-0 ret. Kalinina retired in the final with a left thigh injury.

Where is the tournament taking place?

Spectators fill the stands of the central court at the Rome Foro Italico center, Sunday, May 15, 2011, during the women's final at the Italian Open tennis tournament. Maria Sharapova stormed to a 6-2, 6-4 win over Sam Stosur in the Italian Open final Sunday for the biggest clay-court title of her career. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
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Central court at the Foro Italico in Rome is one of the most iconic sites in tennis

The tournament will once again be held at one of the country’s biggest sports complexes – the Foro Italico.

Located in the heart of Rome, the stadium is home to two iconic courts and has the capacity to hold over 10,500 spectators.

What’s coming up on Sky Sports Tennis?

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Find out all the ways to watch tennis on Sky Sports, including the US Open, ATP and WTA tours

In the run-up to the second Grand Slam of 2024 – the French Open at Roland Garros from May 26 – you can watch all of the biggest tennis stars in action live on Sky Sports as they compete across the clay-court season.

  • Geneva Open (ATP 250) – May 20-26
  • Lyon Open (ATP 250) – May 20-26
  • Internationaux de Strasbourg (WTA 500 with Emma Raducanu in action) – May 20-26
  • Morocco Open (WTA 250) – May 20-26

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