Mauresmo, Henin confirmed for Qatar Berlin Open
Web posted at: 4/17/2006 0:50:42
Source ::: The Peninsula
DOHA: World number one Amelie Mauresmo, the current Australian Open champion, and world number three Justine Henin-Hardenne of Belgium, have been listed for the Qatar Berlin Open, which will be staged next month.
The list of players also includes Mary Pierece of France, Nadia Petrova fo Russia, Elena Dementieva of Russia, Patty Schnyder of Switzerland, Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia, Anna Ivanovic of Serbia and Montenegro, Elena Likhovtseva of Russia, and Anna Groenefeld of Germany. The players’ list was released by QTF yesterday.
Another name included in the list is that of former world number one and seven-time Grand Slam winner Serena Williams of the US, who is now ranked number 61. Serena, who has dropped down in world rankings after missing a spate of events in recent times, is one of the 44 confirmed entries for the 64-player event that will be conducted by the Qatar Tennis Federation (QTF) from May 8-13 in Berlin.
The American tennis giant, who won the Australian Open last year, will be joined by Mauresmo, who lost this year’s Qatar Open final in March.
If Serena turns up for the event, it will be nothing short of a miracle since the American is struggling with fitness problems for quite sometime now.
Serena has not hit the tennis courts since her third-round exit at the Australian Open in January this year. Press reports say that Serena is likely to miss the entire season because of her shaky knee and is likely to announce that she would be taking rest for the 2006 season. This year’s Qatar Berlin Open will be staged by QTF for the second year running. The Berlin Open 2005, sponsored and conducted by QTF and its partners, was won by Henin-Hardenne after a hard-fought battle with Petrova of Russia in three engrossing sets.
The Tier I, $ 1.3m event has been a regular feature on the German tennis scene.
The tournament has been won by tennis legend Steffi Graf of Germany a total of nine times (1986-87-88-89, 1991-92-93-94, 1996). The winners in the last few years include players like Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario of Spain, Conchita Martinez of Spain, Martina HIngis of Switzerland, Amelie Mauresmo of France besides Henin-Hardenne. All the aforementioned names are Grand Slam champions.