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Team WTAworld, Administrator, aka Nibbler
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SYDNEY (Reuters) -- Seven of the world's top 10 women players, including number one Lindsay Davenport, will compete at next year's Sydney international, the main warm-up tournament for the Australian Open.

Tournament organizers said Australian Open champion Jennifer Capriati and last year's Sydney winner Martina Hingis were among the players to confirm their participation in the Jan. 6-12 event.

Other big names include Serena Williams, Kim Clijsters, Justine Henin and Amelie Mauresmo, but Wimbledon and U.S. Open champion Venus Williams has decided to skip the event to play the Australian women's hardcourt championship in Queensland.

Sydney is one of the few events outside the grand slams that features both men and women, but the men's draw struggles to attract as many big names as the women because it clashes with the Kooyong Classic in Melbourne.

Frenchmen Sebastien Grosjean and Arnaud Clement have, however, both signed up for the event along with Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero and talented young American Andy Roddick.

Tournament organizers are also hoping to persuade Australia's new world No. 1 and last year's champion Lleyton Hewitt to defend his title even though he has said he wants a week off before the Australian Open, which starts on January 14.
 
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