DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS
Dubai, UAE; Surface: hard
Seeds: Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova, Caroline Wozniacki, Ana Ivanovic, Agnieszka Radwanska, Ekaterina Makarova, Angelique Kerber, Venus Williams, Andrea Petkovic, Flavia Pennetta, Lucie Safarova, Jelena Jankovic, Carla Suarez Navarro, Alize Cornet, Peng Shuai, Karolina Pliskova
Floaters: Sam Stosur, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Sabine Lisicki, Caroline Garcia
Notes: Seven of the Top 10, four former No. 1s and two unseeded former Slam winners makes for an ultra-competitive field, even without world No. 1 Serena Williams (who withdrew due to illness)…The Top 8 seeds receive first round byes…Tough openers were dealt to (3) Wozniacki likely starting against Stosur, (7) Kerber likely against the former world No. 2 Kuznetsova, (4) Ivanovic likely vs. Lisicki, and (5) Radwanska likely vs. the French riser Garcia…Canadian Genie Bouchard took a wildcard then withdrew due to an arm injury…Wildcards went to Turkey’s Cagla Buyukakcay, Aussie Casey Dellacqua, Slovak Daniela Hantuchova, and Italian Flavia Pennetta…Other players pulling from the event were Varvara Lepchenko and Dominika Cibulkova…Venus Williams beat Cornet in last year’s final…Returning former champs in the field are Venus Williams (2014,’10-09), Kvitova (2013), Radwanska (2012), and Wozniacki (2011).
RIO OPEN PRESENTED BY CLARO
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Surface: clay
Seeds: Sara Errani, Irina-Camelia Begu, Roberta Vinci, Madison Brengle, Johanna Larsson, Anna Schmiedlova, Polona Hercog, Chanelle Scheepers
Floaters: Maria Teresa Torro-Flor, Bethanie Mattek-Sands
Notes: No Top 10 players in the field…Tough start for (5) Larsson vs. Spaniard Maria Teresa Torro-Flor…Wildcards were all Brazilian to Gabriela Ce, Paula Cristina Goncalves and Beatriz Haddad Maia…Five players pulled from the event: Jana Cepelova, Sorana Cirstea, Nicole Gibbs, Christina McHale, and Silvia Soler Espinosa…In last year’s inaugural final, Kurumi Nara defeated Klara Zakopalova.
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