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  1. Tennis

Tennis: This week's highlights

The summer may be over in the northern hemisphere but there's no shortage of tennis action for punters to get stuck into this week, with five tournaments on the go.

Novak Djokovic heads the field in Tel Aviv, while there are also men's competitions in Seoul and Sofia. The women's hardcourt action comes from Tallinn, while there's a rare opportunity at this time of year for the clay specialists in Parma.

Djokovic eyes successful return

For the first time since 1996 an ATP Tour event will be held in Israel this week and top seed Djokovic will be the star attraction as he returns to the tour after a two-month break. Djokovic had to miss the recent US swing, including the US Open and made his return to action in the Laver Cup in London at the weekend.

The 35-year-old legend shows no sign of slowing down, winning his seventh Wimbledon title in the summer, and he will be expected to collect another trophy this week.

Fourth seed Maxime Cressy could be one to keep an eye on. This has been a breakthrough year for the French-American, who netted his first title in Newport in July.

Dominic Thiem, US Open champion in 2020, has been handed a wildcard for the event as he continues his recovery from a wrist injury which saw him spend nine months on the sidelines.

Inaugural Korea Open draws star names

Alexander Zverev was expected to make his return to the court in the Korea Open, which is running an ATP event for the first time following last week's women's edition. The German unfortunately still isn't ready but there is still a decent field assembled in Seoul.

Norwegian Casper Ruud has gone from strength to strength this season and the French Open and US Open finalist will be hopeful of claiming his fourth ATP title of the year. The top seed will make his first appearance in the last 16, where he will face either qualifier Nicolas Jarry or Sunday's San Diego finalist Marcos Giron.

Among those hoping to stop Ruud are world number eight Cameron Norrie and Indian Wells Champion Taylor Fritz. Fritz was a first-round casualty in the US Open and will have extra motivation in Korea as he aims for a place in the ATP Tour Finals.

Sinner gunning for Sofia hat-trick

Jack Sinner has happy memories of the Sofia Open. The Italian claimed his maiden tour title in the event in 2020 and successfully defended the crown last year.

It has been a decent year for Sinner, who reached the quarter-finals in three of the four majors and is top seed in Bulgaria. He could face another former Sofia champion, local hero Grigor Dimitrov, in the semi-finals.

Up-and-coming Brit Jack Draper is seeded seventh, and is housed in the other half of the field to Sinner and Dimitrov.

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Five storylines from the women's US Open

Kontaveit aiming for boost in front of home crowd

Five top-20 players will turn out for the WTA's sole hardcourt tournament this week, the Tallinn Open, including world number three, Estonia's Anett Kontaveit.

Kontaveit is the top seed, but she hasn't been in the best of form recently and could face stiff competition from the likes of Belinda Bencic, Elena Rybakina and Beatriz Haddad-Maia.

Olympic gold medallist Bencic has had a decent season, while Wimbledon champion Rybakina reached the final of the Slovenian Open earlier this month.

However, the biggest threat could come from third seed Haddad Maia. The Brazilian has broken into the top 20 in singles for the first time in her career this year and reached her first WTA 1000 final in last month's Canadian Open. She could meet Bencic in the semi-finals, but Haddad Maia won their most recent encounter in Toronto.

Trevisan looking to recapture early-season form

French Open semi-finalist Martina Trevisan will be hoping a return to clay will help her come back to peak form in the Parma Open.

The Italian world number 27 claimed her first WTA title in Morocco in May, just prior to that superb run in Paris.

Greek world number six Maria Sakkari is the top seed, but this isn't a particularly strong field and, with ten ITF titles on clay under her belt, Trevisan could go deep in the tournament.

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