Chennai Open: Alison Riske-Amritraj heads singles entry list at first-ever WTA event in city
In the first-ever WTA event to be held in Chennai, Alison Riske-Amritraj of USA is heading the singles entry list for the event slated from September 12-18.
The USA's world No.29 Alison Riske-Amritraj leads the entry list for the singles event in the Chennai Open WTA 250 International tennis tournament to be held in India from September 12 to 18.
Apart from Riske-Amritraj, the list of direct acceptances for the singles event includes Belgium's Elise Mertens, who owns grand slams doubles titles, Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia, a doubles champion at the French Open this year and Tatjana Maria of Germany.
Riske-Amritraj is married to Stephen Amritraj, son of former India Davis Cupper Anand Amritraj.
Maria, a mother of two children, had hogged the limelight at Wimbledon earlier this year by reaching the semifinals for the first time ever in her 47th attempt. She was on a comeback trail following the birth of a second daughter.
According to a press release issued here, the WTA announced the names of 21 direct acceptances. The singles main draw comprises 21 direct acceptances, one special exempt, four wild cards and six qualifiers. The Qualifying draw of 24 players consists of 20 direct acceptances and four wild cards. The doubles draw would feature 16 teams.
Tamil Nadu Tennis Association president and Indian tennis legend Vijay Amritraj, was quoted as saying that the field for the first-ever WTA event to be held in the city was an inspiring one.
"In the first-ever WTA event to be held in Chennai, we have an inspiring field. The top three players have impressive performances to their credit. "
The 29th ranked, Alison Riske Amritraj, who is making an impressive comeback is leading the field followed by Elise Mertens of Belgium, a semi-finalist at the Australian Open in 2018 and doubles winner with Aryana Sabalenka at the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2021," the TNTA president said.
He named up-and-coming 15-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova as a player to watch out for.
"It reminds me of the debut of Rafael Nadal at the age of 16 at the Chennai Open then. A women's event is being held in Chennai for the very first time, it looks to me that the Chennai Open will be an exciting affair," he added.
The city is hosting an international tennis event after a gap of five years after the ATP tournament was moved out to Pune in 2017.