LINZ, Austria - WTA World No.11 Aryna Sabalenka headlines this year’s 30th anniversary edition of the Upper Austria Ladies Linz, one of the longest-running women’s tournaments, to be held from November 7-15 at the Linz Tips-Arena.
The 22-year-old from Belarus, who appears at the WTA International event for the first time, has captured two of her eight WTA career titles during this season. She lifted the trophies at the Qatar Total Open in February as well as the Ostrava Open last month.
Sabalenka will be joined in Linz by five more Top 50 WTA players: World No.21 Elise Mertens from Belgium, World No.29 Dayana Yastremska from Ukraine, World No.33 Ekaterina Alexandrova and World No.46 Veronika Kudermetova from Russia, as well as World No. 48 Nadia Podoroska from Argentina, who became the first qualifier in the Open Era to reach the semifinals at Roland Garros after shocking third seed Elina Svitolina.
Italy’s Camila Giorgi, the 2018 champion of the Upper Austria Linz, returns to the event in Austria’s third-largest city. Home favourite Barbara Haas has been awarded a wildcard into the main draw. Fellow Austrian Mira Antonitsch will be a wildcard entry for the qualifying event.
"It's great that the only WTA tournament taking place next week will be played here in Linz. I am very grateful that I have the chance again to be in the main draw thanks to a wildcard,” World No.146 Haas said.
The Upper Austria Ladies Linz, which was originally scheduled for October, has been a WTA International event since 1991. Past winners have included Lindsay Davenport, Justine Henin, Petra Kvitova and Angelique Kerber. Last year’s champion Coco Gauff became the youngest WTA tournament winner in more than 15 years.
This year’s event will feature a 32-player singles draw and 16-team doubles draw. Tournament director Sandra Reichel originally planned to welcome 1,000 spectators per day, however, due to rising coronavirus cases in the country, the Austrian government has decided to implement a second lockdown and the tournament will be held behind closed doors.