The ATP Basel 500 tournament will begin on 19th October and end on 27th October. The tournament’s venue will be at the St. Jakobshalle Basel arena which has a capacity to seat 9,000 fans. Roger Federer will headline the event. The Swiss player has always prioritized playing at the tournament despite his busy schedule.

The beginnings as a ballboy

As a young boy, Federer was a ballboy at the tournament. The 20-time Grand Slam champion has since gone on to become one of the greatest players of all time. He will be chasing his 10th title at the hometown event. He has reached the final in Basel twelve times. Recognizing his beginnings, the Swiss offers pizza to the ball boys after the tournament. He won the title last year and said that it was one of the most important events for him. The former world number one showed his emotions saying that he was happy to win in his hometown since he is approaching the twilight of his career.

Why Nadal and Djokovic will not play

This year’s tournament will not feature Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. The Spaniard is getting married this weekend to his fiancé Xisca Perello. The couple will tie the knot at the La Fortaleza estate in Nadal’s home town of Manacor. While Roger will not attend the wedding, other celebrities such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Enrique Iglesias will attend. Rafa’s last appearance in Basel came in 2015. The 33-year-old reached the final but lost to Federer. Djokovic will also not play in Basel. The Serbian decided to skip the event after playing the Asian swing of the tour. He also has an exhibition against Nadal scheduled for 24th October in Kazakhstan.

Despite Nadal and Djokovic missing the tournament, some top players will play in Basel. Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas will play at the tournament. Swiss player Stan Wawrinka will also play this weekend. Other top players expected are Roberto Bautista Agut and Fabio Fognini. Federer will be wary of Zverev after he knocked him out of the Shanghai Masters at the quarterfinal stage. The 21-year-old has a 4-3 winning record against Federer. The World No.3’s sports management group, Team 8, also manages Zverev. He signed with the sport’s agency this year after parting ways with his former agent Patricio Apey. After playing in Basel, Roger will play in the Paris Masters and then the ATP Finals in London next month.

Roger Federer’s ranking and performance in 2019

Roger Federer Stats info

Ranked no.3, the Swiss played his last match on the 11th of October when he was defeated by Alexander Zverev 6-3 6-77 6-3 in the quarter in Shanghai.

This year Federer has a 45-8 win-loss record. Federer has won 3 titles in 2019 in Dubai, in Miami and in Halle. Roger was the finalist in Indian Wells and in Wimbledon.

Rafael Nadal’s ranking and performance in 2019

Rafael Nadal Stats info

Ranked no.2, Rafael played his last match on the 8th of September when he defeated Daniil Medvedev 7-5 6-3 5-7 4-6 6-4 in the final in U.S. Open to win his 84th career title.

This year Rafael has a 47-6 win-loss record. Rafael has won 4 titles in 2019 in Rome, at the French Open, in Montreal and at the U.S. Open. The Spaniard was the finalist at the Australian Open.

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal played each other 42 times. The head to head is 26-16 for Nadal.

The last time that they locked horns, Roger Federer won 7-63 1-6 6-3 6-4 in the semifinal in Wimbledon in 12th July 2019.

Here the highlights.

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal

Embed from Getty Images

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