The 2011 TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships in Istanbul start tomorrow, not affected by the devastating earthquake that killed around 270 people in Turkey. Players and the Tour expressed their condolences, but their job is calling them to focus on the big task ahead.
Since only the most successful eight players of the season are in the competition, it is not entirely reasonable to talk about the toughness of the draw, but we can always speculate: is the world No.1 the favorite, or the most-established players, or the late season bloomers, or someone else? Let’s analyze the two round-robin groups.
RED GROUP: Caroline Wozniacki, Petra Kvitova, Vera Zvonareva, Agnieszka Radwanska
The tournament will start with the clash between Kvitova and Zvonareva. Kvitova is making her debut at the WTA Championships, but at this year’s Wimbledon she showed she doesn’t shy away at grand stages. Also, the Czech is fresh off a WTA title in Linz.
Another first-time qualifier, Agnieszka Radwanska, is also in action on the first day, against world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki. Radwanska is the hottest player this fall, having won 11 of her last 12 matches, including Premier-level titles in Tokyo and Beijing. Zvonareva was runner-up in Tokyo, while Wozniacki had the worst results of the group this fall, losing in the third round of Tokyo and the quarterfinals of Beijing.
To give you a deeper insight into the mutual relationships of the players, here are their head-to-head statistics, with this year's records in brackets. Read more »