French Open 2018: Rafael Nadal to play opener against Simone Bolelli as Alexandr Dolgopolov pulls out of tournament
World number one Rafael Nadal was due to face Dolgopolov in the first round as he bids for an 11th Roland Garros crown, but will instead face Italian Bolelli.
Paris: Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov pulled out of the French Open with injury on Saturday, leaving Rafael Nadal to open his title defence against lucky loser Simone Bolelli.
World number one Nadal was due to face Dolgopolov in the first round as he bids for an 11th Roland Garros crown, but will instead face Italian Bolelli.
Bolelli, who was beaten in qualifying by Colombian Santiago Giraldo on Saturday, has only won one set against Nadal in five previous meetings and is ranked a lowly 130.
Dolgopolov has been struggling with a wrist injury since the Australian Open and withdrew from the ATP event in Geneva earlier this week.
The official night program includes just one match in the main stadium each day; so far Serena Williams, Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev have joined Nadal in being placed in that slot.
Djokovic condemned Nadal to only his third loss in 16 years and 108 matches at Roland Garros to reach his sixth Paris final after a classic showdown which even beat the country's Covid-19 curfew.
Despite Monday's match being played in bright sunshine and in temperatures of 25 degrees Nadal was baffled as to why the lights inside Court Philippe Chatrier were switched on.