February 8th, 2014
World No. 1 Rafael Nadal pulled from the event citing a stomach virus…Ferrer shooting for third title in a row…Wildcards went to Ferrer and Argentines Facundo Arguello and Guido Pella…Returning champs in the field are Ferrer (2013-12), Almagro (2011), Robredo (2009), and Monaco (2007).
January 4th, 2014
Notes: Sam Stosur still injured?…Tough draws for (3) Vesnina against the Puerto Rican riser Puig, and (5) Pennetta against the former No. 1 Venus…Venus on the small-tournament guarantee-cash circuit this year?…Wildcards went to Aussies Casey Dellacqua, Olivia Rogowska and Storm Sanders…Storm Sanders is an awesome sports name, period…Pulling from the tournament were Nadia Petrova, Ashleigh Barty and Stefanie Voegele…Vesnina in last year’s final beat Barthel…Returning former champs in the field are Vesnina (2013), Barthel (2012), and Jie Zheng (2005).
January 2nd, 2014
Rafael Nadal advanced to the semifinals in Doha. In Brisbane tonight Roger Federer returns while Serena Williams takes on Maria Sharapova in the first big blockbuster match of the season.
December 28th, 2013
Nadal opens against Rosol who famously ousted him at Wimbledon a couple years ago…Other tough starts for (4) Berdych vs. Dr. Ivo, and (2) Ferrer vs. the pesky Dolgopolov…Ferrer beat Nadal last week at the Abu Dhabi exhibition, eventually losing in the final to Novak Djokovic…Nadal has never won Doha in five appearances…Ferrer has never won in three appearances…Murray making his first ATP appearance since back surgery…In last year’s final Gasquet beat Davydenko…Returning champs in the field are Gasquet (2013), Davydenko (2010), and Murray (2009-08).
October 26th, 2013
Serena Williams meets Li Na in the WTA Championships final.
October 25th, 2013
Roger Federer mastered Grigor Dimitrov today in Basel.
October 24th, 2013
On Thursday Williams moved to within two matches of ending the season definitively on top, defeating Petra Kvitova 6-2, 6-3 to move to 3-0 in round robin play and secure a semifinal berth.
October 22nd, 2013
Previewing the WTA Championships.
October 20th, 2013
Controversy came with the end of the season as Kerber received a late wildcard for the Linz tournament, which she won, allowing her to edge Wozniacki for a Top 8 spot. “I do not understand that (the WTA) can suddenly change the draw and allocation of wildcards that way,” Wozniacki said. “There are many things that have been done in an unsportsmanlike and unethical manner. And you can hear from other players. They think it’s so ridiculous.”…
September 27th, 2013
Eight of the Top 10 take to the court in Beijing, with play starting on Saturday…Six current or former No. 1s in the field…Tough starts go to (3) Radwanska vs. Keys 2nd rd., (14) Ivanovic vs. Pennetta, (2) Azarenka vs. Petkovic (winner to likely face former world No. 2 Kuznetsova), (5) Errani vs. Flipkens, (13) Lisicki vs. V.Williams likely 2nd rd., and (4) Li vs. Hantuchova…Wildcards went to Francesca Schiavone, Venus Williams, and China’s Zhang Shuai and Zheng Jie…Pulling from the event were Martina Hingis (from doubles citing personal reasons) Marion Bartoli (retirement), Jamie Hampton (left ankle), Ekaterina Makarova, Romina Oprandi, Nadia Petrova (left hip), and Maria Sharapova (right shoulder)…The Williams sisters took a doubles wildcard…Former champs in the field are Azarenka (2012), Radwanska (2011), Wozniacki (2010), Kuznetsova (2009,’06), Jankovic (2008), Maria Kirilenko (2005), and Serena Williams (2004)…No player has ever won back-to-back singles titles in Beijing.
September 22nd, 2013
Tough openers for (4) Simon after a bye vs. the winner of Karlovic-Tomic, and (7) Nieminen vs. the Dutch riser Sijsling…Wildcards went to three dudes whose names you can’t pronounce…Pulling from the event were Ivan Dodig, Andy Murray (back surgery), and Tommy Robredo…Gasquet beat Simon in last year’s final…Returning champs in the field are Gasquet (2012) and Simon (2009).
August 11th, 2013
How tough is the Cincinnati draw? Former Slam champ Svetlana Kuznetsova barely got in, while former French Open champ Francesca Schiavone didn’t, and has to play the qualifying.
August 4th, 2013
Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka, Agnieszka Radwanska, Li Na, Sara Errani, Petra Kvitova, Marion Bartoli, Angelique Kerber, Caroline Wozniacki, Roberta Vinci, Maria Kirilenko, Samantha Stosur, Kirsten Flipkens, Sloane Stephens, Jelena Jankovic, Ana Ivanovic
July 27th, 2013
Notes: Three former No. 1s among the seeds…No Williams sisters but plenty of Top 10ers and floaters…The Top 4 seeds receive opening-round byes…Tough openers for (1) Azarenka after a bye against Pennetta or Schiavone, (4) Vinci after a bye likely against the veteran Mattek-Sands, (7) Ivanovic vs. Cibulkova, (5) Stosur vs. the rolling Lepchenko, and (2) Radwanska after a bye likely vs. the veteran Hantuchova…Wildcards went to American Allie Kiick, France’s Virginie Razzano, and Stosur…Pulling from the event were Marion Bartoli, Kirsten Flipkens, Bojana Jovanovski, Kristina Mladenovic and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova…Martina Hingis and Hantuchova received a wildcard in doubles…Cibulkova beat Bartoli in the final last year…Returning champions in the field are Cibulkova (2012), Radwanska (2011), and Kuznetsova (2010).
May 3rd, 2013
Notes: Insane field with two former No. 1s and an additional Slam champ all unseeded…The Top 3 seeds are current or former No. 1s…Tough opening-round matches are (5) Na vs. Tamira Paszek then the winner of Venus and (WC) Medina Garrigues, (3) Azarenka vs. Pavlyuchenkova, (11) Petrova vs. a qualifier then likely Kuznetsova, (16) Ivanovic vs. a qualifier then likely her Serb countrywoman Jankovic, (9) Stosur vs. the clay-savvy Suarez Navarro, and (2) Sharapova vs. a qualifier then likely Peng…No blue clay this year…Former champs in the field are Serena Williams (2012) and Kvitova (2011).