World number one and top seed Rafa Nadal will launch his U.S. Open campaign against Russia's Teymuraz Gabashvili after the singles draw for the last grand slam of the year was made at Flushing Meadows on Thursday.
Five-time champion and second seed Roger Federer was drawn to face Argentina's Brian Dabul ahead of a tricky path to a seventh straight final.
The Swiss master could meet former champion Lleyton Hewitt in the third round, Sweden's Robin Soderling in the quarter-finals then Serbia's Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals.
Djokovic, the 2007 U.S. Open runner-up and 2008 Australian Open champion, faces his countryman Viktor Troicki first up.
Britain's Andy Murray, a runner-up in New York two years ago and in Australia earlier this season, was in the same half of the draw as Nadal.