This is a young and big tournament in the WTA circuit. It started in 2014, with Petra Kvitova winning the first edition and also the third one. This will be the fourth edition of the Wuhan Open, with almost every top player present at the start, the only big absence being Elina Svitolina.
The fight for the world’s number one rank is still ongoing, with Muguruza having the chance to widen the gap between her and Halep and with Pliskova also looking to gain more points.
For Halep, this will be a tough one: she needs to defend 350 ranking points (that means reaching the semifinals), but if she wins and Garbine is sent off in the early rounds, she will finally become #1 – Halep will add 550 points. If Halep is defeated in the early rounds and Pliskova advances, the Romanian will drop to number 3. Very complicated.
For live streaming, you can go to WTA TV (paid) but you can also check Tennisfans.tv for free live streams.
The players to look out for in Wuhan are, in fact, Caroline Wozniacki and Jelena Ostapenko. The Danish won her first title of the year in Tokyo and also defeated Muguruza in a categoric manner (6-2, 6-0), while Ostapenko won in Seoul, with the mention that the Latvian faced only players outside the Top 50. Even so, snatching a second career title (after a Grand Slam!) must be a morale boost for the young Jelena.
The prize money/points for Wuhan:
In total there are 8 female competitors with a shot at claiming the title from the current #1, Karolina Pliskova. Other players who will be competing to dethrone her are the world no.2 Simona Halep, Wimbledon champion Garbiñe Muguruza, Elina Svitolina with the most titles from the tour, former No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, British No.1 Johanna Konta, 2004 champion Svetlana Kuznetsova and the only two-time finalist of the year, Venus Williams.
Pliskovas lead as the world number one is by no means substantial. She holds a mere five points over Simona Halep. This season, Pliskova will try to retain as much as 1300 points she gained last year as a finalist.
The battle for the number 1 doubles ranking will also be decided in a couple of weeks. If the new number 1 Lucie Safarova and partner Barbora Strycova make their way into the final, they have a good chance of claiming the title.
Their main major opponents for the title will be Martina Hingis and partner
Chan Yung-jan, and Ekaterina Makarova/Elena Vesina.
The ways things currently stand, team Makarova/Vesina must get into the final to have any chance at claiming the top spot; provided that Safarova does not reach the QF. If she does however, they would have to win the final, not that there was any less incentive for that in the first place.
Meanwhile, Hingis and Partner, Yung-jan are facing longer odds. Not only must they win the title, they would also require a loss before the round of 16 for Safarova.
The live streaming will be available on tennisfans.tv.