"My reaction was normal, because this year I had very tough draws every time nearly", said Halep, who was on the court practicing when she learned of her first-round matchup.
Nadal, a two-time US Open victor, will open against the tough Dusan Lajovic. Also a semi-finalist in Australia, Konta has form on the hard courts and should not be dismissed as a contender for this title.
"Of course it's not so easy", Kerber said.
This tournament is always intriguing as it's always scorching hot in the United States this time of year.
Just looking at the list of seeds will fill you with a sense of intrigue and it will be interesting to see if players like David Goffin (seeded 9th), Roberto Bautista Agut (seeded 12th) and Jack Sock (seeded 13th) will be able to take advantage of their higher seeding. I'm not quite sure I would pick her.
Her only appearance in the past three months came at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford, California, where she beat Jennifer Brady in the first round but then was forced to withdraw again on fitness grounds, this time because of a sore left forearm.
It is a repeat of the 2014 Roland Garros final, where Sharapova won a very, very close three-set match and has virtually dominated the head-to-head from start to finish.
There was an audible gasp from onlookers at the draw ceremony on Friday when the match-up was revealed on the big screens in New York's Seaport District.
Fortunately, the injury didn't prevent Halep to attend the following French Open. They have played each other 37 times (Nadal leads 23-14, although Federer has won the last four), but never in NY. No. 4 Alexander Zverev.
After having spent four and a half years without signing a single triumph in a Grand Slam tournament, and now well rooted in the thirties, the tennis player switzerland has a chance, starting Monday, to win a third title of the kind in 2017, this time to the global of the United States.
Playing as the second seed, Halep surely will start her NY campaign as one of the favorites for the title.
Her five major championships include the 2006 U.S. Open. She has an excellent chance of ascending to world No 1 after this event, as she is only defending 430 points from last year's run to the quarter-final here, 870 fewer than her main rival Karolina Pliskova. "I miss competing and I'll try to get myself back on court as soon as I can, but obviously I'll need to make the correct decision and really think it through these next couple of days with my team".
"The guys who are hurt lately, it's mostly because they are 30-plus", 36-year-old Federer said during a press conference on Saturday ahead of the US Open, which kicks off on Monday.
Federer starts his bid for a sixth title against U.S. teenager Frances Tiafoe, the world number 71 who shocked Zverev in Cincinnati.