Struggling Kerber, 5 of Top 10 at WTA Dubai; Budapest; Previews
by Staff | February 19th, 2017, 11:45 am
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Dubai, UAE; surface: hard
Angelique Kerber, Karolina Pliskova, Dominika Cibulkova, Agnieszka Radwanska, Garbine Muguruza, Elina Svitolina, Elena Vesnina, Barbora Strycova, Caroline Wozniacki, Coco Vandeweghe, Samantha Stosur, Kiki Bertens, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Caroline Garcia, Roberta Vinci, Yulia Putintseva

Floaters: Jelena Jankovic, Mona Barthel, Ekaterina Makarova, Daria Kasatkina, Alison Riske

Notes: Top 10er Johanna Konta withdraws, and no Williams sisters, but Dubai still boasts half of the Top 10…The Top 8 seeds receive opening-round byes…Interesting starts for the struggling (1) Kerber after a bye vs. the Jankovic-Barthel winner, (3) Cibulkova after a bye vs. Makarova, (10) Woz vs. the Russian riser Kasatkina, and (11) Vandeweghe vs. her U.S. Fed Cup teammate Riske…Wildcards went to the German Barthel, Turkey’s Cagla Buyukakcay, and China’s Peng Shuai…The slew of withdrawals joining Konta were Timea Bacsinszky, Eugenie Bouchard, Alize Cornet, Sara Errani, Simona Halep, Karin Knapp, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Monica Niculescu, and Carla Suarez Navarro…Errani beat Strycova in last year’s final…Former champs in the field are Radwanska (2012) and Wozniacki (2011)…Justine Henin won the tournament four times in five years in her heyday, beating a former No. 1 or Slam winner in each final…The world No. 2 Kerber has a 1-5 career win-loss in Dubai…Kerber has a 4-3 win-loss record in 2017, but nonetheless can retake the No. 1 ranking from Serena Williams this week in Dubai.

Budapest, Hungary; surface: hard

Seeds: Timea Babos, Lucie Safarova, Julia Goerges, Sorana Cirstea, Yanina Wickmayer, Pauline Parmentier, Oceane Dodin, Annika Beck

Floaters: Donna Vekic, Kirsten Flipkens

Notes: No Top 30 players, but Hungary’s own Timea Babos heads the field of the event in its first year after being upgraded from an ITF $100K tournament…Wildcards were awarded to Turkey’s Ipek Soylu and Hungarians Dalma Galfi and Fanny Stollar…Andrea Petkovic withdrew from the field…When the tournament was last held as a tour event, Simona Halep beat Yvonne Meusburger        in the 2013 final…Hungary’s Agnes Szavay won the event in 2009-10, beating Patty Schnyder in both finals.


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