Main draw play for the women kicks off in a few minutes for the start of the 2011 Sony Ericsson Open in Miami. Like Indian Wells last week, it is another event without the injury-sidelined Williams sisters, and therefore an event without the slightest hope of a U.S. player going deep.
Kim Clijsters injured her shoulder in Indian Wells, so the backboard-consistent world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki is the favorite. Without any big firepower in the draw, the title is up for grabs.
Main draw matches of interest on Tuesday are Julia “Gorgeous” Goerges vs. struggling American Melanie Oudin, and Swiss veteran Patty Schnyder vs. 16-year-old Floridian Madison Keys.
Of possibly more interest is the last round of qualifying, where five Americans have a chance of making the main draw on Tuesday: former college sensation Irini Falconi vs. Lucie Hradecka, American Sloane Stephens vs. Sophie Ferguson, pocket rocket and newly-declared U.S. teen pro Lauren Davis vs. Anastasiya Yakimova, American Jamie Hampton vs. Kirsten Flipkens, and Christina McHale, who at Indian Wells beat former world No. 2 Svetlana Kuznetsova, vs. former Top 5er Jelena Dokic.
All 32 seeds in Miami receive 1st round byes so there is not a lot of early drama, but potential matches to look for in the coming days include (1) Wozniacki vs. American Bethanie Mattek-Sands 2nd rd., (16) Maria Sharapova vs. (18) Nadia Petrova 3rd rd., (3) Vera Zvonareva vs. (WC) Dinara Safina 2nd rd., and (19) Ana Ivanovic vs. Kimiko Date-Krumm 2nd rd.
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