Sixteen of the Top 17 turn out this coming week for the Rogers Cup in Toronto, where world No. 1 Serena Williams will test the right elbow injury that has forced her to withdraw from her last two tournaments.
World No. 2 Maria Sharapova is the only top player not participating, citing a leg strain.
Former No. 1s Victoria Azarenka and Jelena Jankovic are positioned to do damage to the top seeds, as is former US Open winner Sam Stosur.
Toronto, Canada; Surface: hard
Seeds: Serena Williams, Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova, Caroline Wozniacki, Ana Ivanovic, Agnieszka Radwanska, Lucie Safarova, Garbine Muguruza, Carla Suarez Navarro, Karolina Pliskova, Ekaterina Makarova, Timea Bacsinszky, Angelique Kerber, Venus Williams, Sara Errani, Andrea Petkovic
Floaters: Victoria Azarenka, Sam Stosur, Genie Bouchard, Sabine Lisicki, Alize Cornet, Jelena Jankovic, Caroline Garcia
Notes: Top threats right off the bat for many of the top seeds. The Top 8 seeds receive opening-round byes. Potential tough starts for (7) Safarova vs. Stosur, the injured (4) Wozniacki vs. Bouchard, (14) Venus Williams vs. Lisicki, (3) Kvitova vs. the former No. 1 Azarenka, (9) Suarez Navarro vs. Cornet, and (2) Halep vs. the former No. 1 Jankovic or Garcia…(1) Serena looking at maybe Stosur in the 3rd rd. and (5) Ivanovic or (14) Venus in the semis…Wildcards were awarded to Halep and Canucks Gabriela Dabrowski, Francoise Abanda and Carol Zhao…Radwanska beat Venus in last year’s final…Radwanska attempting to become the first back-to-back Canadian Open winner since Martina Hingis in 1999-2000…A Canadian hasn’t reached the final since 1969…Returning former champs in the field are Radwanska (2014), Serena Williams (2013,’11,’01), Kvitova (2012), Wozniacki (2010), and Ivanovic (2006).
TENNIS-X NEWS, NOTES, QUOTES AND BARBS
Why isn’t this week’s Citi Open in Washington, D.C. part of the US Open Series? Anyone? Seems to be a U.S. tournament…ESPN has dropped its French Open coverage due to crappy ratings, and being tired of being a third wheel with NBC and Tennis Channel coverage. Along with the fact they’re firing people and losing sports properties and personalities at an alarming rate…Tennis Channel testing Mardy fish in the booth this week for possible future commentary duties. Do sometimes Paul Annacone and the other commentators reach over to see if Mardy has a pulse? Throw back a few drinks before you get in the booth, or something, give us something…Eugenie Bouchard dumped her coach Sam Sumyk after only six months. Bouchard pulled from Washington this week with an ab injury, but is entered in Toronto…John Isner has never won a title outside of the ATP 250 series…Every one of those Emirates Airline commercials is annoying in its own way…What’s the over-under on Rafa winning a title during the U.S. hardcourt season? Zero? 50-50 if he enters Winston-Salem?…Caroline Wozniacki, who had an incredible U.S. hard court season last year, now has multiple injuries and is 0-1 after losing first round in Stanford…Happy 34th birthday Roger Federer. You’re No. 2 in the world and still the GOAT. “I think the fans know why I’m playing,” Federer said. “I play for myself and my team, my fans, my country, you name it…At the end of the day, I enjoy it. I work hard in practice. I’m very pleased how well I’m playing…It’s a great game to play, I tell you…I haven’t thought about (retirement) a whole lot, to be honest. Clearly I need to think about it eventually, but not for the moment.” He will next appear in two weeks time in Cincinnati where he has won six career titles.
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