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Wozniacki through to quarterfinals as Asian circuit draws top stars


Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark hits a return during her women’s singles second round match against Petra Martic of Croatia at the China Open tennis tournament in Beijing on October 3, 2018. FRED DUFOUR / AFP

Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki defeated Croatian Petra Martic 7/5; 6/3 to advance to the quarterfinals of the on-going China Open tennis championship holding in Beijing.The world’s number two and tournament’s second seeded player remains the favourite after world number one Simona Halep retired in the first round on account of a back injury.

In the first event after her first round upset in New York, Halep lost the first set 6/1 to qualifier Jabeur in Beijing.In other third round matches, Timea Babos of Hungary defeated home country’s Shuai Zhang, 6/1; 6/2, Karolina Pliskova of Czech Republic defeated Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus and Anasstasija Sevastova of Latvia dismissed Donna Vekik 6/3; 6/2.

The China Tennis Open tops the tournaments on the Asian Circuit in Prize Money and caliber of players and is one of the few events at which male and female players compete in the same event. However, unlike the Grand Slams, there are 64 players in the main draw.

The China Open in Beijing was preceded by WTA tournaments, The Korean Open in Seoul the Guangzhou Open and the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo Japan. For the women, it precedes the Prudential Hong Kong Open, Tianjin Open in China, and the BNP Paribas WTA finals in Singapore in the last week of October.

For the men on the ATP Tour, the Asian Circuit commenced with Chengdu Open and Chenzen Open (each carrying 250 ranking points), the current China Open (500 points) and followed by the Rakuten Japan Open (500 points) and the Rolex Shanghai Masters (1000).

After the Asian Circuit, there are other events in Europe before the Nitto ATP Tour finals in London, in the middle of November, for the top ranked eight players.
Between the US Open that ends in the first week of September and the Australian Open and its warm up tournaments in January of the following year, the tennis world still squeezes in the Davis Finals for the men, Federation Cup for the women, the Hopman Cup for male and female national teams and some exhibitions, such as the Laver Cup between Europe and the Rest of the world and Next Generation Event for male players but these do not carry ranking points.

On account of this year-long playing period, the two player associations have protested the demands on the players. However, with many sponsors yearning to get into the high visibility offered by tennis, the status quo is not likely to be changed any time soon.

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