Cincinnati’s own Peyton Stearns has been awarded a Wild Card for the event featuring World No. 1 Iga Swiatek and US No. 1 Jessica Pegula. It should be a great event with some of the best the WTA offers. Check out this preview of the tournament so you can decide on who to wager on at your online Ohio sportsbook.
What is the Western and Southern Open?
The Western and Southern Open is a WTA 1000 event held annually in Mason, Ohio, at the Lindner Family Tennis Center with prize money totaling USD 2.5 million.
The Western and Southern Open champion receives $412,000 in prize money and 900 WTA points, while the runner-up takes home $242,800 and 585 WTA points.
Western and Southern Open Top Seeds
Barring any last-minute withdrawal, the top seeds for the Western and Southern WTA 1000 are as follows.
- Iga Swiatek (Poland)
- Aryna Sabalenka (Belarus)
- Jessica Pegula (USA)
- Elena Rybakina (Kazakhstan)
- Ons Jabeur (Tunisia)
- Caroline Garcia (France)
- Coco Gauff (USA)
- Maria Sakkari (Greece)
- Petra Kvitova (Czech Republic)
- Marketa Vondrousova (Czech Republic)
- Barbora Krejcikova (Czech Republic)
- Beatriz Haddad Maia (Brazil)
- Belinda Bencic (Switzerland)
- Daria Kasatkina (Russia)
- Madison Keys (USA)
- Veronika Kudermetova (Russia)
Checking in on Peyton Stearns
This will be Stearns 3rd Western and Southern Open, and is 1-2 at her hometown event. Stearns is 4-6 on the hardcourts this season but has reached No. 59 in the WTA rankings. She made it through the qualies in Montreal but fell in the 1st round of the main draw to Leyla Fernadez. Stearns will have the luxury of not having to qualify in Cincy, and the home crowd and a decent draw could mean an early underdog opportunity for Stearns.
Phil’s Tournament Notes
World No. 1 Iga Swiatek is a four-time Grand Slam champion and is always a difficult draw for anyone in the field to get past. Swiatek opened her summer season with a win in Warsaw and is currently riding a seven-match hardcourt winning streak.
No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka is a dangerous player on this surface. The reigning Australian Open champ is third in aces on the WTA tour and is 34-10 on the hardcourts, and was the finalist in Miami.
No. 3 seed Jessica Pegula is the top-ranked American in the draw and reached the 2022 quarterfinals of this event. Pegula is 4-1 thus far on the hardcourts this summer and should at least reach the quarterfinals or better next week.
No. 4 seed Elena Rybakina leads the WTA tour in aces and is another dangerous player on this surface. She’s the reigning Australian Open finalist and reigning Miami Open champ with big groundies and a 32-12 record on hard courts during the past 52 weeks.
No. 5 seed Ons Jabuer hasn’t been seen since her devastating Wimbledon final loss to Marketa Vondrousova. Jabuer was visibly upset after losing that final, and she could find herself losing early in Cincy.
No. 6 seed and defending Western and Southern Open champion Caroline Garcia is second on the WTA tour in hardcourt aces but has lost both of her summer hardcourt matches. Garcia has extra motivation as she has 900 points to defend, and I expect her to fight hard this week.
No. 7 seed Coco Gauff is off to a terrific start to the summer, winning Washington last week, and she also won Auckland in January. She’ll be a huge fan favorite and has one of the biggest serves on tour. Coco is playing well and could be a sleeper to win this event.
No. 8 seed Maria Sakkari has reached six semis this season but only one final. She was knocked out of Montreal in a tumultuous match by American Danielle Collins, and her powerful groundstrokes and big serve could lend itself to a bounce-back week for the Greek No. 1.
Possible Western and Southern Open Underdogs
These players won’t likely win the Western and Southern Open but could provide early-round underdog value.
American Jennifer Brady has returned from a two-year absence and has done well for herself. She has a big serve and lost a three-set thriller to Rybakina Montreal. She’ll have huge crowd support and has the game to beat anyone on tour.
American Alycia Parks is making quite a name for herself this season. She’s 3rd on tour in hardcourt aces, has won a title this year, and has the type of serve that can turn out anyone’s lights.
Canadian Bianca Andrescu is another wild card who can beat anyone on any given day. She’s been ranked as high as 4th in the world, but injuries have slowed her assent to the top.
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