NEW HAVEN, Conn., July 17, 2017 Dominika Cibulkova joins defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska, two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova and a plethora of in-form WTA stars in a red-hot player field at the 2017 Connecticut Open presented by United Technologies.
World No.11 and 2016 BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore champion Cibulkova is set to make her eighth appearance in New Haven and will be joined by world No.13 Kiki Mladenovic, who is enjoying a breakthrough year after winning her first WTA title in St Petersburg (Russia) and lies ninth in the Porsche Race to Singapore, Tournament Director Anne Worcester announced today.
Of the 20 players confirmed in the 2017 field, 10 have won at least one WTA singles titles this year, illustrating just how deep and dangerous the draw will be at the WTA Premier event, which takes place August 18-26 at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale.
Also bringing their best form to New Haven are a trio of Russians, Daria Kasatkina, who battled to her first WTA title at 2017 Charleston at 19 years old, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who won titles in Monterrey and Rabat (Morocco) and Olympic gold medallist and 2016 quarterfinalist Elena Vesnina, who enjoyed the biggest title of her career at 2017 Indian Wells.
Vesnina and her partner, Ekaterina Makarova, teamed up to win the ladies’ doubles title at Wimbledon – their third Grand Slam title together - and the reigning BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore champions now lie second in the Porsche Race to Singapore doubles standings.
Samantha Stosur (Strasbourg), Kvitova (Birmingham), Lesia Tsurenko (Acapulco), Anett Kontaveit ('s-Hertogenbosch), Lauren Davis (Auckland) and Kiki Bertens (Nurnberg) are the other entrants to have lifted silverware this year as the Connecticut Open prepares to celebrate 20 years of women’s tennis in New Haven this summer.
“We are delighted that our field contains so many players in outstanding form,” said Worcester. “Half of our players have already won a title this year, which shows the rich depth in women’s tennis right now. Add that emerging talent to established Grand Slam champions like Petra Kvitova and Sam Stosur, plus Domi Cibulkova and our defending champion Aga Radwanska and we have an extremely exciting and competitive field. We will also aim to add two more big names in the next month with our additional Top 20 wild cards.”
Flying the American flag this year will be Davis, who won the title in Auckland after ploughing through a field that contained both Williams sisters, and Sloane Stephens, a wild card who made her return to competition at Wimbledon after an extended break with a foot injury.
Worcester also announced a wild card for 2014 Wimbledon runner-up Genie Bouchard, who counts New Haven as one of her favorite stops on the tour and will return for the fourth consecutive year. “I’m really excited to be heading back to New Haven this summer,” said Canada’s Bouchard. “The tournament conditions are just perfect as a warm-up to the US Open and I have really enjoyed getting to know the city and Yale University in the past three years.”
The main draw currently features 22 players – 20 direct acceptance and two wild cards – with the direct entry cut-off at 38. Also making an appearance will be Roland Garros semi-finalist Timea Bacsinszky, five-time Grand Slam quarterfinalist Carla Suarez Navarro, Australian Open semi-finalist Mirjana Lucic-Baroni and 2016 Top 10 debutant Roberta Vinci.
Chinese No.1 Zhang Shuai and No.2 Peng Shuai will also be in action. Peng Shuai lies in fifth position in the Porsche Race to Singapore doubles standings with her partner Andrea Hlavackova. All but one of the singles players (Daria Gavrilova) has won at least one career WTA title and 10 are at the peak of their game, having reached career-high rankings this year.
In addition to adding two more Top 20 players with wild cards, six players will advance through the 48 player qualifying draw to complete the field. The top two seeds at the tournament will receive a bye.
2017 marks a celebration of 20 years of women's tennis in New Haven and Czech legend Martina Navratilova will take part in the opening ceremony on Monday evening (August 21) followed by a mixed doubles exhibition with fellow Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander.
Fans who want the best seats to the Navratilova Exhibition and PowerShares Series men’s matches (August 24-25), which will feature Tennis Hall of Famers Michael Chang and John McEnroe along with Fairfield’s James Blake and defending champion Mark Philippoussis, can secure them by purchasing a multiple session package. Packages include Weeklong Box Seats (all 14 sessions), After Hours (every evening session and Saturday finals), Final Four (last four sessions which includes PowerShares Series), and Pick Four Flex (choice of four early round sessions).
For more information about the 2017 Connecticut Open, to volunteer to be part of our team and to purchase tickets visit www.ctopen.org or call 203-776-7331.