The 2010 Rome Internazionali BNL d’Italia men’s qualifying singles event begins on Saturday 24 April at 10am local time in Rome. The qualifying event will be completed on Sunday 25 April with play beginning at 12 noon. The men’s singles qualifying draw was finalised on Friday 23 April. There are 28 spots in the qualifying draw and it is divided up between 4 Wild Cards (WC), 1 Alternate (ALT) and 23 Direct Acceptances.
There are 14 seeds in the qualifying which means that the highest 14 ranked players are seeded to meet each other in “The Qualifying Round”. The Qualifying Round is the round that decides which players qualify for the main draw, because the winner of that round qualifies.
As mentioned in our Rome Men’s Schedule of Play, the players who lose in the 1st round of qualifying earn 900 Euros but do NOT earn any ATP ranking points. The players win through to the 2nd round of qualifying but are then defeated, earn 1800 Euros and 14 ATP ranking points, which is more than a player receives who is directly accepted into the main draw and then loses his 1st round match.
Players who qualify for the main draw will earn a minimum of 7,650 Euros and supposedly 25 ATP ranking points if they are defeated in the 1st round of the main draw. However, each of the players who qualified in Rome in 2009 and lost in the 1st round of the main draw had 35 points added to their rankings. That means they received 3.5 times that amount that a direct acceptance received who lost his 1st round match. Do you think that is a fair way to allocate points?
The No.2 seed in the qualifying draw is the current World No.57 Michael Llodra of France. If he beats the unseeded Flavio Cipolla, who is No.206 and then Denis Istomin or Pere Riba as he is expected to, to qualify, then he can earn 35 points as compared to a main draw acceptance such as Marcos Baghdatis, who beat Roger Federer at Indian Wells last month, if they both lose in the 1st round of the main draw!
The seeds do not receive a BYE in the 1st round of the qualifying event. All players must win 2 matches in a row in order to qualify. The qualifying draws are different to main draws because these events do not play off until there is one undefeated player. Therefore, the No.1 seed and the No.2 seed are not separated at the opposite ends of the draw.
The number of seeds that is equal to the number of spots there are in the main draw that have been allocated to qualifiers are ALL separated from each other. These seeds are just listed down the draw. In Rome there are 7 spots in the main draw allocated for the main draw. The players seeded to earn those 7 qualifying spots are highlighted below.
The draw for the qualifying is as follows:
- (1) Juan Ignacio Chela versus (WC) Federico Gaio
- Oscar Hernandez versus (8) Sergiy Stakhovsky
- (2) Michael Llodra versus Flavio Cipolla
- Pere Riba versus (13) Denis Istomin
- (3) Alejandro Falla versus Daniel Gimeno-Traver
Marcel Granollers versus (9) Michael Russell
- (4) Simon Greul versus Mischa Zverev
- (WC) Alessandro Giannessi versus (10) Peter Luczak
- (5) Leonardo Mayer versus (ALT) Francesco Aldi
- (WC) Thomas Fabbiano versus (11) Andrey Golubev
- (6) Jarkko Nieminen versus Alberto Martin
- Nicolas Lapentti versus (12) Santiago Giraldo
- (7) Oleksandr Dolgopolov Jnr versus (WC) Gianluca Naso
- Yuri Schukin versus (14) Jan Hajek
Just in case it was not clear…Each group of 2 matches (as you run down the draw), will be the players who meet each other in the next round. So, the winner of Chela & Gaio will play the winner of Hernandez & Stakhovsky for a spot in the main draw and in order it follows, so that the winner of Llodra & Cipolla will play the winner of Riba & Istomin etc.
Gaio, Giannessi, Fabbiano Naso are all Italians and in a strong show of support by the Italian Tennis Federation all of the were wild cards into the qualifying event were awarded to locals.
Cipolla is also Italian, he gained a direct acceptance in the qualifying event because his ranking was better than the last direct acceptance into qualifying, Yuri Schukin of Kazakhstan at World No.223. Another Italian Francesco Aldi, was given a spot in the draw as an alternate because 1 player who was accepted into the draw did not take his place, which left one spot for an alternate.
Pictured above is Chilean Fernando Gonzalez just after making contact with the ball on this single handed backhand drive at the 2010 Sony Ericsson Open in Miami. The 29 year old will be looking for a big performance at Rome this year as his best 2 results for the past 12 months were making the semi finals in Rome and at the French Open.
Stay tuned to this tennis website for further information about Rome. Click this link for more details including the Schedule of Play -> Rome 2010: Apr 24 – May 8.
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