Roger Federer, Alexander Zverev and Dominic Thiem all feature in Halle

Defending champion Roger Federer headlines the field at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle from Monday June 18 as the nine-time winner continues his Wimbledon preparations.

The Swiss great returned to competitive action at the Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart after missing the clay-court campaign to aid his chances of securing a ninth Wimbledon triumph.

The tournament which runs in parallel to the Fever-Tree Championships at Queen’s Club, boasts four of the world’s top-10 players including French Open finalist Dominic Thiem, with live coverage throughout the week on Sky Sports Arena.

There are no British representatives in the event, as British No 1 Kyle Edmund, Andy Murray and Cameron Norrie all fine-tune their Wimbledon build-up in London at Queen’s.

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June 18, 2018, 11:00am

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Two NextGen stars Stefanos Tsitsipas and the returning Andrey Rublev will hope to further their burgeoning reputations in the men’s game while experienced campaigners Richard Gasquet and Kei Nishikori also feature in the field.

One to watch

There will be a lot of intrigue about how Thiem can build on his run to a maiden Grand Slam final at the French Open, during the grass-court campaign.

The Austrian doesn’t hold a great record at Wimbledon – having never progressed past the fourth round – but on the evidence of his performance at Roland Garros could improve on that, if he can replicate the impact his punishing forehand and heavy first serve had.

The 24-year-old will make his fourth consecutive appearance at the tournament in Germany, with his best result coming in 2016 when he lost in the semi-finals and if he transitions quickly could head to Wimbledon with increased cause for optimism.

Surprise in store

Karen Khachanov possesses a strong all-round game and continues to show increased maturity on the biggest stages of the game.

The highly-rated Russian comes into his first grass-court appearance of the season on the back of an absorbing five-set defeat to world No 3 Alexander Zverev in the French Open fourth round.

Khachanov, world No 38, reached the semi-finals in Halle, losing to eventual winner Federer before he underlined his credentials on the surface with a run to the Wimbledon third round on his main draw appearance.

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June 19, 2018, 12:00pm

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We will return for more tennis coverage from the ATP Tour when we head to Germany for the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, live on Sky Sports Arena from 11am on Monday, 18 June.

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