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Tennis Roundup: Who will bag the WTA Player of the Year award?

October 09, 2018 19:22 IST

Simona Halep

IMAGE: Simona Halep. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

World Number one Simona Halep and Japan's Naomi Osaka are among the players nominated for the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Player of the Year award.

Spain's Garbine Muguruza, who had won the prize last year, failed to make it to the nominees' list this time.

Other nominees for the prize are Angelique Kerber (Germany), Petra Kvitova (Czech Republic and Caroline Wozniacki (Denmark).


American tennis ace Serena Williams has been nominated for the WTA Comeback Player of the Year award along with Belinda Bencic (Switzerland), Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA), and Ajla Tomljanovic (Australia).

While nominees for the Most Improved Player of the Year award features Kiki Bertens (Netherland), Julia Goerges (Germany), Daria Kasatkina (Russia), Elise Mertens (Belgium), Wang Qiang (China), and Aliaksandra Sasnovich (Belarus), the contenders for WTA Newcomer of the Year award are Amanda Anisimova (USA), Danielle Collins (USA), Mihaela Buzarnescu (Romania), Sofia Kenin (USA), and Aryna Sabalenka (Belarus).

In WTA Doubles Team of the Year award, the nominees are CoCo Vandeweghe and Ashleigh Barty (USA/Australia), Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova (Czech Republic), Elise Mertens and Demi Schuurs (Belarus/Netherland), and Kristina Mladenovic and Timea Babos (France/Hungary).

The winner of the awards will be declared on October 19.

Sabalenka powers past Kenin in Tianjin

Fourth seed Aryna Sabalenka took down American Sofia Kenin 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-0 in the first round of the Tianjin Open on Tuesday, as the Belarusian maintains her slim hopes to secure a spot at this month's WTA Finals.

Every win in the WTA international tournament counts for Sabalenka, who along with Karolina Pliskova, Sloane Stephens, Elina Svitolina and Kiki Bertens, is fighting for the three available spots left for the season-ending event in Singapore.

Wuhan Open winner Sabalenka, currently 10th in the Race to Singapore leaderboard, must win in Tianjin this week, and also needs help from other results from Pliskova and Bertens to keep her qualifying bid alive.

Sabalenka recovered from an early break down in the opening set and saved three break points at 5-5 before winning the tiebreak.

A lapse in concentration cost Sabalenka the second set, but she roared back in style to drop only four points in the final five games of the match.

The 20-year-old is up against Poland's Magda Linette in the second round, who collected a win over Evgeniya Rodina in three sets on Monday.

Earlier in the day, Britain's Katie Boulter produced a sparkling display to upset eighth seed Maria Sakkari 7-6(4), 6-3.