World No. 1 Serena Williams to play winner of Canadian Gabriela Dabrowski and Italian Flavia Pennetta; Top-ranked Canadian Eugenie Bouchard to open against Swiss teen Belinda Bencic on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Toronto, – The official draw for the 2015 Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Toronto was conducted on Friday at the Hilton Toronto. Canada’s No. 1-ranked player Eugenie Bouchard will face Swiss Belinda Bencic in her opening match of the tournament, scheduled to take place Tuesday at 7 p.m., with the winner taking on No. 4 seed and 2010 Rogers Cup champion Caroline Wozniacki in round two.
The Top 8 seeds all receive a first-round bye, with No. 1 seed Serena Williams set to take on the winner of the match between Canadian wild card Gabriela Dabrowski in her Rogers Cup main draw debut and Italian Flavia Pennetta. A three-time Rogers Cup champion, Serena’s pathway to a fourth title in Toronto could include a third-round match against German Andrea Petkovic and a quarter-final against French Open finalist and No. 7 seed Lucie Safarova.
If the seeds hold, the other quarter-final in Serena’s half would see Wozniacki versus No. 5 seed Ana Ivanovic.
Just prior to the draw commencing, world No. 2 Maria Sharapova withdrew from the tournament with a right leg strain, moving Simona Halep into the No. 2 seed position.
On the bottom half of the draw, the quarter-finals could see Romanian Halep take on defending champion and No. 6 seed Agnieszka Radwanska, and No. 8 seed Garbiñe Muguruza of Spain against No. 3 seed and 2012 Rogers Cup champion Petra Kvitova of Czech Republic. The second round could feature a blockbuster match-up between fellow two-time Grand Slam winners Kvitova and Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, who will open her tournament against young Ukrainian Elina Svitolina.
Among the enticing first-round matches set to take place over the first two days of main draw competition is last year’s finalist and former world No. 1 Venus Williams against 2013 Wimbledon runner-up Sabine Lisicki of Germany. Should Venus advance to the third round, she could play Wozniacki for place in the quarters.
The two other Canadians in the main draw are Francoise Abanda, who will take on Petkovic in the first round, and Carol Zhao, who will challenge American Madison Brengle. Both will be looking for their first Rogers Cup main draw victories. Six other Canadians – Bianca Andreescu, Heidi El Tabakh, Sharon Fichman, Natasha Irani, Charlotte Robillard-Millette, and Katherine Sebov – will be competing for one of 12 qualifier positions in the main draw. The qualifying tournament will take place over Pizzaville Free Community Weekend this Saturday August 8 and Sunday August 9, and admission is free for everyone for the two days.