Gasquet Kyrgios seek French Open boost at ATP Estoril

France’s Richard Gasquet and Australian Nick Kyrgios will hope to kick-start pre-Roland Garros injury comeback bids at the Estoril Open which begins on Monday.

Fifth seed Gasquet, who lost the 2007 final to Novak Djokovic and suffered the same fate in 2012 against Juan Martin del Potro, will step onto court for the first time in more than six weeks after suffering a back injury.

The 27th-ranked Frenchman has yet to play on clay in 2015 and will need to try and quickly acclimatise to the surface this week.

It’s much the same for Kyrgios, seeded seventh, with the number 41 Australian teenager losing a 4-1 lead in the final set last week in Barcelona to exit in the first round against Swedish qualifier Elias Ymer.

Kyrgios has struggled with injuries since the start of the season, with various back, ankle and other physical problems.

He took a break after the Australian Open quarter-finals which he played in pain and did not reappear until Indian Wells in March.

After winning one round, he lost to Grigor Dimitrov and took more recovery time at home for his ankle concerns.

The long-time Portugal clay showcase event has been completely restructured under new tournament management and moved to a small club location in the seaside town.

Court capacity will drop to 4,000 from 6,000, patrons will find themselves seated closer to the court itself and a few unprecedented night sessions are planned.

Past tournament winners include Roger Federer, Del Potro, Djokovic and Stan Wawrinka.

Spain’s Feliciano Lopez leads the seedings, ahead of South African Kevin Anderson, Spaniard Tommy Robredo and Leonardo Mayer of Argentina.

Gasquet begins in the first round against Australian Marinko Matosevic while Kyrgios gets an early clay test against Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas.


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