DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS
Dubau, U.A.E.; Surface: hard
Seeds: Simona Halep, Garbine Muguruza, Carla Suarez Navarro, Petra Kvitova, Belinda Bencic, Karolina Pliskova, Roberta Vinci, Svetlana Kuznetsova
Floaters: Ana Ivanovic, Daria Gavrilova, Julia Goerges, Caroline Garcia, Jelena Jankovic, Ekaterina Makarova
Notes: Four Top 10ers in the field, and all seeds are in the Top 20…The Top 4 seeds receive opening-round byes…A tough field yields a number of strong first-round match-ups: (1) Halep vs. the Ivanovic-Gavrilova winner, (8) Kuznetsova vs. Goerges, (3) Suarez Navarro vs. the French comer Garcia, (5) Bencic vs. the former No. 1 Jankovic, and (4) Kvitova vs. Makarova…Wildcards went to Halep, Goerges, Kvitova and Pliskova…The slew of players pulling from the draw were Serena Williams, Timea Bacsinszky, Angie Kerber, Peng Shuai, Aggie Radwanska, Lucie Safarova and Caroline Wozniacki…In last year’s final Halep beat Pliskova in two tight sets…Returning champs in the field are Halep (2015) and Kvitova (2013)…Halep trying to become the first back-to-back Dubai champ since Venus Williams (2010-09).
DELRAY BEACH OPEN
Delray Beach, Fla., USA; Surface: hard
Seeds: Kevin Anderson, Bernard Tomic, Ivo Karlovic, Grigor Dimitrov, Jeremy Chardy, Steve Johnson, Donald Young, Adrian Mannarino
Floaters: Juan Martn del Potro, Sam Querrey, Austin Krajicek, Rajeev “Rampras” Ram
Notes: The No. 1 seed Anderson, who is a Delray-area resident, could start with three matches in a row against Americans — Krajicek, Querrey, then either Young/Smyczek/Fritz…Wildcards were awarded to Del Potro and Americans Noah Rubin and Tim Smyczek…American Taylor Fritz received a special exempt into the main draw after his run in Memphis…Other interesting starts for Del Potro vs. American Denis Kudla, with the winner likely meeting (3) Karlovic, and (2) Tomic vs. the hot-handed net-crushing Rampras…Withdrawing from the event were Tommy Haas, Yen-Hsun Lu, and Milos Raonic who is reportedly suffering a right adductor injury, which didn’t stop him from playing and dunking in the NBA celebrity all-star game yesterday…The Bryan brothers are the top seeds in doubles…Karlovic beat Young in last year’s final…Former champs in the field are Karlovic (2015), Anderson (2012), and Del Potro (2011).
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