Muguruza, 5 of Top 10 at Loaded Tokyo; WTA Previews

by Staff | September 18th, 2016, 6:40 pm

Three WTA events this week are headed by the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo. The tournament features five of the Top 10 including US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova and a number of dangerous unseeded players, including a former No. 1 and a former Olympic gold medalist:
Tokyo, Japan: Surface: hard

Seeds: Garbine Muguruza, Agnieszka Radwanska, Karolina Pliskova, Carla Suarez Navarro, Madison Keys, Dominika Cibulkova, Petra Kvitova, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

Floaters: Anastasija Sevastova, CoCo Vandeweghe, Andrea Petkovic, Lucie Safarova, Belinda Bencic, Caroline Wozniacki, Monica Puig

Notes: Five of the Top 10, including US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova, and a slew of dangerous floaters make Tokyo the place to watch this week…The Top 4 seeds receive opening-round byes…Tough starts for Muguruza after a bye, coming out cold possibly against the US Open quarterfinalist Sevastova; (8) Pavlyuchenkova vs. the veteran Petkovic (winner to possibly meet the giant-serving Vandeweghe); (6) Cibulkova vs. Safarova; and (4) Suarez Navarro cold after a bye meeting the winner of Bencic-Wozniacki…Wildcards were dealt wide to the American Keys, the Czech Kvitova, Japan’s Naomi Osaka, and Russian Olesya Pervushina…Pulling from the event were Simona Halep, Samantha Stosur, Sloane Stephens and Daria Gavrilova…Radwasnak beat Bencic in last year’s final…Radwanska looking to become the first back-to-back winner in Tokyo since Lindsay Davenport (2003-04)…Former champs in the field are Radwanska (2015,’11), Kvitova (2013), and Wozniacki (2010).

Guangzhou, China; Surface: hard

Seeds: Sara Errani, Jelena Jankovic, Ana Konjuh, Christina McHale, Alison Riske, Danka Kovinic, Katerina Siniakova, Zheng Saisai

Floaters: Sabine Lisicki

Notes: No Top 35 players among the seeds, but a former No. 1 and a Slam finalist…The all-Chinese wildcard deal went to Peng Shuai, Wang Yafan and Xu Shilin…Among the big-name withdrawals were Alize Cornet, Caroline Garcia and Roberta Vinci…Jankovic is playing doubles with Martina Hingis, who last year captured the title with Sania Mirza…Li Na won this tournament in its debut in 2004…Jankovic is the defending champ, in last year’s final topping Denisa Allertova, who this year with a win in her opener could then face (1) Errani…Jankovic (2015) and Hsieh Su-wei (2012) are former champs in the field.

Seoul, Korea; Surface: hard

Seeds: Irina-Camelia Begu, Yaroslava Shvedova, Zhang Shuai, Kristina Mladenovic, Monica Niculescu, Kirsten Flipkens, Nicole Gibbs, Louisa Chirico

Floaters: Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Camila Giorgi, Mona Barthel

Notes: No Top 20 players in the field…Tough starts for (3) Zhang second round vs. the Mattek-Sands/Stefanie Voegele winner, and (7) Gibbs vs. Barthel (winner likely to face Giorgi)…The all-Korean wildcard slate went to Han Na-lae, Jang Su-jeong and Lee So-ra…Your top doubles seeds are Japan’s Eri Hozumi and Georgia’s Oksana Kalashnikova…The top-seeded Begu is the defending champ, in last year’s final beating Belarus’ Aliaksandra Sasnovich…Begu is the lone former champ in the field…The tournament has seen better tournament slots and fields, with former champs (and former No. 1s) Caroline Wozniacki (2012), Venus Williams (2007), and Maria Sharpaova (2004).


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7 Comments for Muguruza, 5 of Top 10 at Loaded Tokyo; WTA Previews

jalep Says:

Agree, with the seeds and the draw, the Tokyo 470 poiny tournament is loaded! The race to Singapore

Agnieszka Radwanska has won Tokyo 2 times already but not back to back. I’m wondering if Wozniacki will continue her good form from US Open – if so, I could see her win this

Tennis Channel says they will broadcast Tokyo starting Thursday. Good news if in the US.

jalep Says:

Meant to say: The race to the Final in Singapore is heating up :D

RZ Says:

I’ll have to keep my eye on the Tokyo tournament. Lots of good players.

jalep Says:

It’s hard to do, RZ. The time difference is a problem!

Checking scores I see Monica Puig won her first round match v Lepchenko. Hope to see Puig get back on her game after winning the Olympic Gold. And noticed Naomi Osaka beat Misaki Doi first round.

Also interested to follow-up on some in the Tokyo draw who made waves at US Open like Sevastova, Konjuh, Wozniacki, and Pliskova. Hoping the real Muguruza shows up.

RZ Says:

Wozniacki won her first round match against Bencic. Is the Woz back? I hope so.

Looks like the match between Cibulkova and Safarova was really good.
Surprised that Madison Keys lost in a tiebreaker. You’d think with her serve she would have the advantage in a tiebreak.

jalep Says:

Well, Wozzie beat Belinda Bencic but Belinda isn’t at her best yet, however I think Woz is pretty much back – almost picked her to win Tokyo. But couldn’t not pick Aga!

I’m not surprised when Madison Keys loses. Putintseva is a better fighter / mentally a stronger competitor than Keys. Keys doesn’t seem consistent at all and many times I’d say apathetic – lots of potential but… like Muguruza, is also an enigma.

Upcoming Tokyo match-ups of interest:
Muguruza vs Sevastova 😯
Kvitova to face Puig. Last time they played, Kvitova lost – at an Olympics medal round.

Cibby will take on big serving home favorite Naomi Osaka. Might be good.

jalep Says:

Tokyo Wednesday:
Woz is still on a roll, she knocked out Suarez-Navarro in 3 sets!
Puig beat Kvitova AGAIN…also 3 sets 😨
Radwanska edged Strycova in 3.
Teenager, Namoi Osaka hit Cibby off the court in straight sets.

Upcoming matches – Thursday

The big one: Muguruza over Sevastova….I’m going to believe in Garbine this time.
Putintseva over Linette
Karolina Pliskova over Sasnovich
Svitolina vs Pavlyuchenova ia a toss-up.

Next week is a the Big one: Wuhan for 900 points. I would expect Kerber and Halep to be back ….maybe even Serena and Venus
And the week after comes Beijing for 1000 points.

Last year Venus Williams won Wuhan and Garbine Muguruza won Beijing. This is it, the lasts gasps before Singapore and Zhuhai finals! We’ll see who makes it this year!

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