| By New York Tennis Magazine Staff

The USTA has announced that world number one-ranked and reigning Australian Open and Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic, reigning U.S. Open and French Open champion Rafael Nadal, and five-time U.S. Open champion Roger Federer lead the men’s singles field for the 2011 U.S. Open Tennis Championships. The player field also features former U.S. Open champions Andy Roddick and Juan Martin Del Potro. Each of the world’s top 101 men received direct entry into the U.S. Open, representing 40 countries.

The 2011 U.S. Open will be played Aug. 29-Sept. 11 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y. Both the men’s and women’s U.S. Open singles champions will earn $1.8 million with the ability to earn an additional $1 million in bonus prize money (for a total $2.8 million potential payout) based on their performances in the Olympus U.S. Open Series. The U.S. Open Men’s Singles Championship is presented by Mercedes-Benz USA.

Leading the list of entrants is world number one Novak Djokovic of Serbia, who will be seeking his first U.S. Open title after reaching the final in 2010. Djokovic won the 2011 Australian Open and Wimbledon titles, and following his win at Wimbledon became the first player other than Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer to be ranked No. 1 on the ATP World Tour since Andy Roddick in 2003.

World number two Rafael Nadal enters as the defending U.S. Open champion and is seeking his 11th career Grand Slam singles title after winning the 2011 French Open.

World number threeranked Roger Federer is seeking his sixth U.S. Open title which would surpass Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors for most U.S. Open men’s singles titles in the Open Era. In 2007, Federer became the only man to win the Olympus U.S. Open Series and U.S. Open titles in the same year.

Following Nadal, Djokovic and Federer on the entry list arenumber four Andy Murray of Great Britain, the 2008 U.S. Open runner-up; number five Robin Soderling of Sweden, the French Open runner-up in 2009 and 2010; number six-ranked David Ferrer of Spain, a 2007 U.S. Open semifinalist; number seven-ranked Gael Monfils of France; number eight Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic, the 2010 Wimbledon runner-up; number nine Mardy Fish of Tampa, Fla.; and number 10 Andy Roddick of Austin, Texas, the 2003 U.S. Open Champion. In all, there are six entrants who have won Grand Slam singles titles in their careers, including 2003 French Open champion Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain.

Other American men who received direct entry into this year’s tournament include: Number 35 John Isner of Tampa, Fla.; number 50 Sam Querrey of Las Vegas; number 63 Alex Bogomolov Jr. of Miami; number 66 Ryan Sweeting of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and number 91 James Blake of Tampa, Fla.

Marc Gicquel of France, ranked 101st, is the last player accepted directly into the men’s field of 128. Additionally, three players used protected rankings to gain direct entry: Fernando Gonzalez of Chile; Tommy Haas of Germany; and Ivo Karlovic of Croatia. Sixteen more players will gain entry through the U.S. Open Qualifying Tournament, Aug. 23-26, while the remaining eight spots are wild cards awarded by the USTA.

Among the players competing in the U.S. Open Qualifying Tournament will be the winner of the second annual U.S. Open National Playoffs – Men’s Championship, held during the Olympus U.S. Open Series event in New Haven, Conn., prior to the U.S. Open Qualifying Tournament. The USTA created the U.S. Open National Playoffs in 2010 to allow players 14-and-older, regardless of playing ability or nationality, to vie for a spot in the U.S. Open Qualifying Tournament via one of 16 Sectional Qualifying Tournaments.

The July 18 edition of the ATP World Tour rankings was used to determine the U.S. Open main draw entry list. Seeds will be determined and announced closer to the start of the event.