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http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/200308/06/eng20030806_121788.shtml


Current world No 1 women's player Serena Williams will headline this year's Polo Open, which will be held in the city in mid-September.

Current world No 1 women's player Serena Williams will headline this year's Polo Open, which will be held in the city in mid-September.

Tournament organizers earlier last week announced the Wimbledon champion had confirmed she would compete in the US$585,000 event but expressed concern about Williams' injuries that have forced her to withdraw from a series of warm-up matches ahead of this month's US Open.

"She is without doubt the most wanted player of every tournament in the world," said Michael Luevano, tournament director of Polo Open.

Earlier reports in Chinese newspapers said organizers would pay an "appearance fee" of about US$300,000 to secure Williams' presence at the tournament, a Tier-II event on the WTA annual tour.

Polo Open will replace the Princess Cup, traditionally held in Tokyo, Japan. Dentsu Group, which owns the Princess Cup, decided to move the tournament to Shanghai, which has hosted a US$140,000 WTA Tier-IV event for the past three years.

Willams is the defending champion at the Princess Cup, where she defeated Belgian Kim Clijsters in the final in three sets last year.

"It's a big achievement to have her play here at Shanghai Polo Open," said Luevano.

The tournament director admitted he was a little worried about Williams' injuries, but he expected she would recover before the event as "she is a woman of incredible physical resilience."

Williams pulled out of the Acura Classic in Washington last week because of a left leg injury. A knee problem caused her to withdraw from the earlier Bank of the West Classic at Stanford, and injuries forced her to skip this week's J.P. Morgan Chase Open in Los Angeles.

Williams underwent surgery last Friday to repair the injury to her knee.

Among the other players confirmed for the event are Ai Sugiyama, No 11 on the WTA ranking, as well as Conchita Martinez from Spain, No 14.

Other noteworthy players include Ashley Harkleroad from the US (No 42), Austrian Barbara Schett (No 54), Maria Sharapova from Russia (No 57) together with her fellow Russian Dinara Safina (No 50), Marat Safin's younger sister.

Organizers have confirmed 21 of the 32 main draw candidates so far, leaving places open for other top players or players with a high market value to sign up.
 

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Thank you :wavey:
 

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I doubt Serena is to play here. It´s just a PR thing.

I think that Serena is to quit most of the events directly after the US Open just to prepare for a return in Philadelphia and later on in LA.

It´s the AnnaK-factor that always uses to attract people to buy tickets and then they´ll find out that there is non of the players reported at this event.

I´m not even sure that the WTA gets a top8 player to China directly after the US Open. But might be a PR thing and Venus gets there.
 

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Title sponsor Shanghai Volkswagon has confirmed that the first ten people who drive to the event in a Polo car can have free tickets for the whole week. Pretty neat, eh? Local media have always reported as a 32 draw, but the main draw in fact is made up of 28 players.
 

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Sammm said:
How can Sharapova play here? If she plays the Us and Canadian Opens won't she have used up her 13 tournaments??
Tournaments for players under AER start from the players birthdays
US Open doesn't count as its a slam direct entry

Maria is 16 and has 10 WTA events plus 4 SLAMS but as she played Wimbledon as a WC, thats 9 WTA events plus 4 SLAMS until she is 17 in April.

Maria's played 4 events (inclde WIM in those 4) plus Roland Garros
she has 5 more WTA events still to play until she is 17 plus USOPEN & AUS OPEN.

she's due to play Toronto (1)
US OPEN
Tokyo (2)
Luxembourg (3)

so i doubt if she plays here as that will leave her ONE event from Jan -April plus Aus Open.
 

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I really thought that this is exactly the sort of event Jennifer should be playing. There are a couple of hardcourt events after the US Open and Jen should play them, then take a few weeks of the indoor season off, since it did her no favours last year. This is a chance to gain some valuable points, which are even more needed now that she has lost Sna Diego and Toronto points through injury.

Hope she is well enough to play the US Open and Shanghai.
 

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MAINDRAW
11 JPN SUGIYAMA, AI F 1
14 ESP MARTINEZ, CONCHITA F 2
35 SLO SREBOTNIK, KATARINA F 3
39 UZB TULYAGANOVA, IRODA F 4
42 USA HARKLEROAD, ASHLEY A 5
44 AUS MOLIK, ALICIA F 6
45 FRA LOIT, EMILIE F 7
48 KOR CHO, YOON JEONG F 8
49 ZIM BLACK, CARA F 9
50 RUS SAFINA, DINARA F 10
52 HUN MANDULA, PETRA F 11
53 ESP SANCHEZ LORENZO, MARIA A 12
54 AUT SCHETT, BARBARA F 13
57 RUS SHARAPOVA, MARIA A 14
60 ITA PENNETTA, FLAVIA A 15
61 SUI GAGLIARDI, EMMANUELLE F 16
63 GER BARNA, ANCA F 17
65 ARG FERNANDEZ, CLARISA F 18
67 FRA COHEN-ALORO, STEPHANIE A 19
68 CZE BEDANOVA, DAJA F 20
69 SVK HUSAROVA, JANETTE F 21

QUALIFYING
70 JPN MORIGAMI, AKIKO A 1
71 INA WIDJAJA, ANGELIQUE F 2

72 AUS PRATT, NICOLE F 3
73 SVK CERVANOVA, LUDMILA F 4
74 USA CRAYBAS, JILL F 5
77 CZE KOUKALOVA, KLARA A 6
82 USA TAYLOR, SARAH F 7
83 SVK NAGYOVA, HENRIETA F 8
84 USA IRVIN, MARISSA F 9
85 JPN OBATA, SAORI F 10
87 USA REEVES, SAMANTHA F 11
90 ITA SERRA ZANETTI, ANTONELLA F 12
92 SVK SUCHA, MARTINA F 13
93 USA CARGILL, ANSLEY F 14
96 SVK KURHAJCOVA, LUBOMIRA A 15
98 ITA CAMERIN, MARIA ELENA F 16
99 ESP PARRA, ARANTXA A 17
100 UKR VAKULENKO, JULIA A 18
103 ITA GARBIN, TATHIANA F 19
104 SVK FISLOVA, EVA A 20
106 ESP MARTINEZ GRANADOS, CONCHITA F 21
108 ESP MARRERO, MARTA F 22
109 RUS JIDKOVA, ALINA F 23
111 CZE VORACOVA, RENATA A 24
112 GER ROESCH, ANGELIKA F 25
113 ESP MEDINA GARRIGUES, ANABEL F 26
114 GER SCHRUFF, JULIA A 27
115 CRO KOSTANIC, JELENA F 28

NOTE
Jennifer Capriati & Jelena Dokic entered late as MDO & are the Top 2 alternates for the Maindraw.
 
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