The 28 year old Russia rose as high as No 2 in the world on the back of Grand Slam titles at the US Open and Roland Garros and after an injury plagued season in 2012 she returned to form in 2013 with a semi-final appearance in Moscow and quarter-finals at the Australian Open and Roland Garros.
Former world No.2 Svetlana Kuznetsova will be making her first appearance at the Pattaya tournament.
Svetlana Kuznetsova is joined in the main draw by a quartet of young guns who are eager to upset their peers. Heading the group is Thailand’s Luksika KumKhum. The 20 year old who has risen to no 88 in the world ranking caused a sensation at the Australian Open knocking out sixth seed Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic before going down to Germany’s Mona Barthel in a closely fought three set encounter.
Another 20 year old making waves heading for Pattaya is Spain’s Garbine Muguraza she has climbed to No 38 in the world after winning the title in Hobart where she had to come through from the qualifying rounds. She has continued her hot streak at the Australian Open where at press time she has reached the 4th round, her latest victim being World No 10 Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark.
A third 20 year old making her first appearance in Pattaya is Ajla Tomljanovic of Croatia who broke into the top 100 last year and has been impressive so far this year.
Completing the quartet is teenage star 17 year old Donna Vekic of Croatia who is the youngest player in the top 100 and who has already made a final appearance in Birmingham last year.
The 16-draw qualifying competition will be held on 26 – 27 February with main draw matches commencing on 28 January with play starting from 15.00 daily, except the semi-finals on Saturday 02 February and the finals on Sunday 03 February, when play begins at 16.00.
Tickets for the PTT Pattaya Open are on sale at 300, 500, 800 and 1,200 baht. For more information on the tournament and tickets, please contact the tournament office on-site at the Dusit Thani Hotel, Pattaya or the website www.pentanglepromotions.com or at Thaiticketmajor on 02-262-3456, website www.thaiticketmajor.com.
Spain’s rising starlet Garbine Muguraza serves to Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark during the Australian Open in Melbourne, Saturday, Jan. 18. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
Luksika Kumkhum of Thailand makes a backhand return to Mona Barthel of Germany during their second round match at the Australian Open tennis championship, Wednesday, Jan. 15. (AP Photo/Shuji Kajiyama)