Photo : Peter Power/Tennis Canada
By Max Gao
Thursday morning will mark the start of third-round action at the Aviva Centre, with the remaining 16 players all looking to secure a coveted spot in the quarter-finals of the 2021 National Bank Open presented by Rogers.
Medvedev  vs. Duckworth
After rallying from a set down to defeat Alexander Bublik on Tuesday, World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev told the media in a virtual press conference that he doesn’t feel any extra pressure as this week’s top seed — if anything, he considers it an honour. The two-time Grand Slam finalist will open Thursday’s night session on Stadium Court against Australian qualifier James Duckworth, who followed up two qualifying wins over the weekend with big wins over American Taylor Fritz and No. 16 seed Jannik Sinner. This will be their first meeting.
Tsitsipas  vs. Khachanov
On the heels of his first career win over France’s Ugo Humbert, No. 3 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas will be looking to continue his quest for another run to the final in Toronto. But he will meet a stern challenge in Russia’s Karen Khachanov, who upset No. 15 seed Aslan Karatsev in the last round. Tsitsipas has come away with the upper hand in each of their last three meetings, including earlier this year in Rotterdam, but Khachanov, who recently won the Olympic silver medal in Tokyo, will be looking to flip the script.
Rublev  vs. Isner
Following an impressive victory over crafty Italian Fabio Fognini, No. 4 seed Andrey Rublev — who just won the Olympic gold medal in mixed doubles — will be looking to ride this wave of momentum into his third-round clash with big-serving American John Isner. Isner has won both of their previous meetings, with their last meeting coming earlier this year in Madrid, where the 36-year-old won in a third-set tiebreak.
Schwartzman  vs. Bautista Agut 
In the only all-seeded match-up of the third round, No. 8 seed Diego Schwartzman will square off against No. 10 seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the final match of the day session on Stadium Court. They have split their first two meetings, with Bautista Agut winning their last one in Montréal two years ago.