14 Feb Two-Time DBO Champion Ernests Gulbis and Top-Seeded Cameron Norrie Highlight Qualie Draw
Ernests Gulbis, a two-time Delray Beach Open champion, will have a chance to earn his third title here in Delray Beach at the ATP Tour’s first outdoor North American event of 2020.
But first, Gulbis must conquer the event’s 16-player qualifying draw that begins Saturday at the Delray Beach Open Stadium and Tennis Center. The 31-year-old righthander from Latvia was given a wildcard berth into the two-day qualifying rounds.
Gulbis won Delray Beach Open singles titles in 2010 and 2013. He lost in the first round of the qualies at Pune, India in his most recent tournament and arrives here ranked No. 190 in the world. Gulbis will meet Colombian Daniel Elahi Galan in the first round Saturday.
The qualifying tournament favorite, however, will be No. 1 seed Cameron Norrie of Britain, who is currently ranked No. 59 in the world. The 24-year-old Norrie was an All-American at TCU before turning pro.
The No. 2 seed is Japan’s Taro Daniel, currently ranked just outside the Top 100 at 105. Both Norrie and Daniel made their only appearances in the Delray Beach main draw in 2018.
Norrie plays unseeded German Peter Torebko in the first round Saturday with Daniel slated to take on Australian Bernard Tomic, a former world No. 17 and 2015 Delray Beach semifinalist trying to reach his sixth main draw here.
American Stefan Kozlov, who won Delray’s pre-qualifying “Survivor” tournament last fall, earned the other wild card into the qualifying draw. The 22-year-old, who resides in nearby Pembroke Pines, is ranked No. 370 in the world.
Also in the draw and a familiar face to Delray Beach crowds will be Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, who has played in seven main draws here and famously beat Andre Agassi to reach the semis in 2006.
Qualies begin at 11:00 am Saturday.