After 148 day suspension due to the coronavirus, pro tennis officially returns Monday for the WTA event in Palermo.
The 130th-ranked Viktoriya Tomova did test positive for the virus and several players withdrew including Simona Halep, but field in Italy showcases seven players in the Top 25 including former French Open standouts and top two seeds Petra Martic and Marketa Vondrousova.
“It’s been so long without tennis, without competition, without the adrenaline that we all kind of love,” Martic told the WTA. “So I was really excited to hear that Palermo and Prague will be 100 percent organized and will go on.
“So I’m just going to try to enjoy myself. To be back on the court right now is really just a privilege without thinking about any results or any goals or focused on numbers or anything else.”
Maria Sakkari and Anett Kontaveit are the third and fourth seeds, respectively.
Elise Mertens, Donna Vekic, Dayana Yastremska and Ekatarinka Alexandrova round out the seeds.
With travel complications, no players outside of Europe will be in the main draw, and that includes the last of the qualifying.
About $24K USD and 200 ranking points will go to the winner. Points can only be earned or replaced, but won’t drop off for players who didn’t return to defend points.
Last year, Jill Teichmann beat Kiki Bertens in the final.
The ATP will hold their first event later this month in New York City with the re-located Cincinnati Masters.
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