Muguruza, Sakkari, Pavlyuchenkova chase WTA Finals berths at Kremlin Cup

Some of the key contenders for the remaining four berths at the WTA Finals will be in Moscow next week for the Kremlin Cup

Maria Sakkari of Greece & Garbine Muguruza of Spain at the net after the quarter-final at the 2021 Qatar Total Open WTA 500 tournament

With the BNP Paribas Open wrapping up on Sunday, the WTA Tour returns to Europe with two events lined up in the coming week – the Kremlin Cup in Moscow and the Tenerife Ladies Open in Spain. While Aryna Sabalenka is the top seed in Kremlin, Spain’s Garbine Muguruza leads the WTA Finals contenders hoping to move ahead in the race standings.

With four berths for the season-ending WTA Finals still up for grabs, there is plenty to play for in Moscow besides the rankings points and prize money.

World No 2 Sabalenka, who has already punched her ticket to the WTA Finals, is the top seed and after a first-round bye, the Belarusian could face either Ajla Tomljanovic or Liudmila Samsanova.

Spain’s Garbine Muguruza, Greece’s Maria Sakkari and Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova round out the top four seeds and also have first round byes.

They are followed by Indian Wells semi-finalist Ons Jabeur, former world No. 1 Angelique Kerber, KAzakh Elena Rybakina, and former world No 1 Simona Halep in the seeded list.

Prior to Indian Wells, Sakkari was fifth in the race to the WTA Finals, Muguruza was at No 6, Jabeur at No. 9 and Pavlyuchenkova at No 11 (Note – the new points race will be updated on Monday October 18).

Jelena Ostapenko, who also reached the semis at Indian Wells, is among the unseeded players in the draw and faces former top 10 player Andrea Petkovic in what should be an exciting first round clash.

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