Karolina Pliskova, Zhengzhou Open

World number 2 Karolina Pliskova didn’t drop a set all week, defeating Polona Hercog, Sofia Kenin, Ajla Tomljanovic and Petra Martic to win the inaugural edition of the Zhengzhou Open. She had lost to Martic in four of their previous five matches, but this time, she powered past the Croatian 6-3 6-2.

“My goal was to win this tournament…this is the best start to the Asian swing, I don’t think I could have done any better [this week],” said Pliskova.

The victory gives the Czech her tour-leading fourth title of the season (Brisbane, Rome, Eastbourne), her 15th overall. She also secures a fourth consecutive singles qualification at the WTA Finals, the longest active streak.

Read more:
Brisbane 2019: Karolina Pliskova outlasts Lesia Tsurenko

Karolina Pliskova 2019 US Open outfit

Karolina Pliskova will wear the latest installation of the PL Rolando collection, a fresh and classic white, blue and red skirt and tank combo. The PL Rolando line is named after Pierluigi Rolando, FILA‘s original creative director, back in 1971.

Ashleigh Barty and Kiki Bertens will both wear FILA Awning collection. A bold skirt and tank combo, available in orange and pink for Barty:

And a navy/white/pink/orange dress for Bertens:

Barty (number 2), Pliskova (3) and Bertens (5) enjoyed great success on court so far this year, and are among the favorites to win the US Open debuting on Monday 26th.

Read more:
Isner, Schwartzman and Querrey US Open outfits

Karolina Pliskova, Brisbane 2019

Rallying from 6-4 5-3 down, only one game from defeat, Karolina Pliskova battled back to defeat Lesia Tsurenko 4-6 7-5 6-2 and clinch her second Brisbane title, her 12th overall. She defeated  Yulia Putintseva, Marie Bouzkova, Ajla Tomljanovic and Donna Vekic en route to the final.
The first time Pliskova won the Brisbane title in 2016, she went on to make the quarterfinals of the Australian Open. Hopefully for her, she’ll best that performance this year.
Her opponent in the final, Lesia Tsurenko caused a huge upset ousting US Open champion Naomi Osaka 6-2 6-4 in the semifinals. Despite her loss, the Japanese will return to her career-high number 4 ranking.

Elina Svitolina was the defending champion, but lost to Aliaksandra Sasnovich – in a repeat of last year’s final – in the second round.

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Brisbane International Tennis Finals 2019 - Karolina Pliskova  def. Lesia Tsurenko

Photo credit: Andrew Robertson

Australian Open draw

Only two days to go to the first Slam of the season! Who do you think will win? Check out her Australian Open 2017 preview:

Men’s draw:

Contenders:

Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are once again the big favorites for the title.
5-time Australian Open finalist Andy Murray, who begins his campaign on Monday against 93-ranked Ilya Marchenko, has a quite easy route to the quarterfinals where he could meet Kei Nishikori or Roger Federer.
Novak Djokovic will launch his bid for a record seventh Australian Open title with a challenging first round match against Fernando Verdasco, who missed 5 match points against the Serb in Doha last week. Grigor Dimitrov could wait in the fourth round, before a clash against Dominic Thiem in the quarters.
The only two other players who could, in my opinion, capture the title this year are Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic. Unpredictable on the ATP tour, Wawrinka is always consistent come Grand Slam time; while Raonic has improved a lot in the last year and is not a one-weapon only player anymore.

Players to watch:

Rafael Nadal struggled to get back to form since his injury, but had a decent start of the season with a win at the Abu Dhabi exhibition and a quarterfinal in Brisbane. He could face Alexander Zverev in the third round, Gaël Monfils in the fourth round and Milos Raonic in the quarterfinals.

Roger Federer will play for the first time since last year’s Wimbledon. Seeded 17, he has not won a Slam title since Wimbledon 2012. He could face Tomas Berdych in the third round, and then Kei Nishikori and Andy Murray.

Projected quarterfinals:

Andy Murray [1] – Kei Nishikori [5]
Stan Wawrinka [4] – Marin Cilic [7]
Gaël Monfils [6] – Milos Raonic [3]
Dominic Thiem [8] – Novak Djokovic [2]

First round matches to watch:

Nicolas Almagro – Jérémy Chardy
Jerzy Janowicz – Marin Cilic [7]
Dustin Brown – Milos Raonic [3]
Tommy Haas – Benoît Paire
Fabio Fognini – Feliciano Lopez [28]
Fernando Verdasco – Novak Djokovic [2]

Click here for the full men’s draw

Who will be the 2017 Australian Open champion?

  • Someone else (26%, 29 Votes)
  • Novak Djokovic (25%, 28 Votes)
  • Rafael Nadal (24%, 27 Votes)
  • Andy Murray (16%, 18 Votes)
  • Stan Wawrinka (3%, 3 Votes)
  • Milos Raonic (3%, 3 Votes)
  • Kei Nishikori (2%, 2 Votes)
  • Dominic Thiem (2%, 2 Votes)
  • Tomas Berdych (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Gaël Monfils (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Marin Cilic (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 113

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Women’s draw:

Contenders:

Unlike the men’s draw, there is no clear favorite in the women’s draw, and it seems anything could happen.
Angelique Kerber had a dream season last year, with two Grand Slam titles and the world number one spot. She opens up her title defence with a match-up against Lesia Tsurenko and could play reigning Roland Garros champion Garbine Muguruza in the quarterfinals.
Serena Williams, who suffered a shock defeat to Madison Brengle in Auckland last week, will be chasing Grand Slam title number 23. Like Novak Djokovic, she will face a tough test in the first round: former world number 7 Belinda Becic.
The ever consitent Agnieszka Radwanska could finally win her maiden Slam title, while Karolina Pliskova and Garbine Muguruza will be looking to confirm their stand-out 2016 season.

Players to watch:

Finalist here in 2014, Dominika Cibulkova claimed her biggest title last October: the WTA Finals. She will look to pick up where she left off last year.

A surprising semifinalist last year, Johanna Konta reached the top ten since then, and won Sydney title, dismantling Radwanska in the final. She could do some damage in the draw.

Like Cibulkova, Svetlana Kuznetsova finished 2016 in great form. On a good day, she can beat anyone.

First round matches to watch:

Louisa Chiricio – Eugenie Bouchard
Mona Barthel – Destanee Aiava
Laura Siegemund [26] – Jelena Jankovic
Ana Konjuh – Kristina Mladenovic
Heather Watson – Sam Stosur [18]
Tsvetana Pironkova – Agnieszka Radwanska [3]
Kirsten Flipkens – Johanna Konta [9]
Yanina Wickmayer – Lucie Safarova
Belinda Bencic – Serena Williams [2]

Projected quarterfinals:

Angelique Kerber [1] – Garbine Muguruza [7]
Simona Halep [4] – Svetlana Kuznetsova [8]
Karolina Pliskova [5] – Agnieszka Radwanska [3]
Dominika Cibulkova [6] – Serena Williams [2]

Click here for the full women’s draw

Who will be the 2017 Australian Open champion?

  • Serena Williams (35%, 15 Votes)
  • Angelique Kerber (23%, 10 Votes)
  • Garbine Muguruza (12%, 5 Votes)
  • Karolina Pliskova (12%, 5 Votes)
  • Someone else (7%, 3 Votes)
  • Dominika Cibulkova (5%, 2 Votes)
  • Svetlana Kuznetsova (5%, 2 Votes)
  • Agnieszka Radwanska (2%, 1 Votes)
  • Simona Halep (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Johanna Konta (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Carla Suarez Navarro (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 43

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Photo credit: Australian Open instagram

2016 US Open Angie Kerber

“When I was a kid I was always dreaming to one day be the No. 1 player in the world, to win Grand Slams. And today is the day. All the dreams came true this year.” — Angelique Kerber

What a year indeed for Angie Kerber: 3 Grand Slam finals, silver at the Olympics and the number one spot. Here’s a look at Kerber’s career by the numbers:

2003: Kerber turned pro in 2003, aged 15

2012: she wins her first WTA tournament, the Open GDF in Paris, defeating Marion Bartoli in the final

10: Kerber has won 10 tournaments in her career so far

0: she has never won a Premier tournament (the WTA’s equivalent to the ATP Masters 1000)

10: her rankings at the start of the season

8730: her number of WTA points

22: Kerber became the 22nd player to reach the number one spot since the WTA ranking was introduced in November 1975.

1: at 28 years old, she became the oldest female player to debut at the top spot.

2: she’s the second German player to reach number one, 21 years after her idol Steffi Graf.

3: she’s only the third left-handed player, after Martina Navratilova and Monica Seles.

Video credit: C Yorkie