Hong Kong Tennis Open: Garbine Muguruza joins line-up as organisers announce upgrade to US$750,000 WTA event
The Spaniard is added to Victoria Park player field which includes US Open champion Naomi Osaka and world No 5 Elina Svitolina
Two-time major winner Garbine Muguruza has been announced as a surprise late entry to the Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open, which has been upgraded to a US$750,000 event for the first time.
Fresh from a second-round defeat in Beijing, the 2016 French Open and 2017 Wimbledon champion will be making her debut at Victoria Park Tennis Stadium for the WTA International Series event, which takes place over October 6-14.
“We are thrilled that a player of Garbine’s calibre will be joining our already impressive field,” tournament director and Hong Kong Tennis Association CEO Chris Lai said.
The Spaniard, who is 15th in the WTA rankings, joins US Open champion Naomi Osaka, former French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko and world No 5 Elina Svitolina as one of the early favourites.
“She [Muguruza] is a charismatic and hugely popular player that fans will be keen to see in action in Hong Kong for the first time and we look forward to welcoming her on court at Victoria Park in just a couple of days,” Lai added.
Alize Cornet, Daria Gavrilova, Ekaterina Makarova, Samantha Stosur and Lesia Tsurenko will also be in action next week.
China No 1 Wang Qiang will be representing home hopes along with Zhang Shuai – who was narrowly beaten in a three-set quarter-final thriller by Osaka at the China Open in Beijing on Friday – and Zheng Saisai.
Hong Kong No 1 Zhang Ling has also been given a wild card to the tournament.
Of the increased prize money on offer, Lai said: “The increased prize money allows us to attract an even more remarkable field and enhances our status as a leading WTA International Series event on the calendar.”
The 24-year-old Muguruza heads to Hong Kong having won the title in Monterrey, reached the final in Doha and the semi-finals of Roland Garros in 2018.