With the Sunshine Double wrapped up, the Hologic WTA Tour moves to green clay with the Credit One Charleston Open at 500 level this week.

Four Top 10 players feature in the draw, and comprise the top four seeds: Aryna Sabalenka, Paula Badosa, Karolina Pliskova and Ons Jabeur. Three former winners are also present: defending champion Veronika Kudermetova, 2019 titlist Madison Keys and 2016 winner Sloane Stephens. Other names of note include US Open finalist Leylah Fernandez and former World No.2 Petra Kvitova.

Charleston 2022: Scores | Full draw | Order of play

No.1 seed Sabalenka and No.3 seed Pliskova are both in need of a form boost after losing their opening matches at Indian Wells and Miami. Sabalenka, who took a wildcard into Charleston, has landed in a section heavy with home players. After receiving a bye, she will face either Caty McNally or Alison Riske in her first match, and is projected to meet No.15 seed Amanda Anisimova in the third round and either No.6 seed Jessica Pegula or No.9 seed Keys in the quarterfinals.

Pliskova, who returned to action in Indian Wells after fracturing her wrist in the off-season, is competing in Charleston for the first time since 2013 and heads the third quarter. She will open against either Yuan Yue or Katarina Zavatska, the 22-year-old Ukrainian whose own six-month hiatus due to health issues only ended in Miami.

Should Pliskova get off the mark in that match, her section becomes extremely intriguing. No.13 seed Stephens could await in the third round - but the American faces a tough opener herself against fast-rising 19-year-old Zheng Qinwen, who has spoken of her fondness for clay despite her ultra-aggressive game.

Charleston 2022: Five first-round matches to circle
[13] Sloane Stephens (USA) vs. Zheng Qinwen (CHN)
Ana Konjuh (CRO) vs. [WC] Linda Fruhvirtova (CZE)
Shelby Rogers (USA) vs. Kaia Kanepi (EST)
Elena-Gabriela Ruse (ROU) vs. Hailey Baptiste (USA)
Wang Xiyu (CHN) vs. [10] Belinda Bencic (SUI)

Whoever emerges from that section is projected to face either No.7 seed Fernandez or No.11 seed Kvitova in the quarterfinals. However, danger looms in the second round for Kvitova. Hometown heroine Shelby Rogers and Kaia Kanepi own five Top 20 victories between them this year already, and their first-round clash begs the question of how two renowned upset artists will fare against each other.

Interview: Inside the rise of Zheng Qinwen

No.2 seed Badosa is returning to the site of a key breakthrough. Last year, the No.71-ranked Spaniard upset then-World No.1 Ashleigh Barty in the quarterfinals for her first Top 10 win. One year on, she arrives in the week of her own Top 3 debut. Badosa starts against either Anna Bondar or former NCAA champion Arianne Hartono, with No.16 seed Zhang Shuai projected in the third round and No.8 seed Kudermetova in the quarterfinals.

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veronika kudermetova
RUS
More Head to Head
44.4% Win 4
- Matches Played
55.6% Win 5
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belinda bencic
SUI

Kudermetova, who captured her maiden title here last year, could resume her rivalry with fellow Generation 1997 talent Belinda Bencic in the third round. The pair have played seven times at pro level, with Kudermetova leading the series 4-3.

In another first round to circle, Ana Konjuh and wildcard Linda Fruhvirtova will square off for the right to take on No.10 seed Bencic in the second round. Fruhvirtova made waves in Miami where the 16-year-old Czech, playing in just her fourth WTA main draw, upset Elise Mertens and Victoria Azarenka to reach the last 16.

Interview: Meet Linda Fruhvirtova, the latest teenager making a splash

No.4 seed Jabeur, a semifinalist last year (and a runner-up at the one-off WTA 250 in Charleston that followed), heads the second quarter. The Tunisian opens against either Madison Brengle or wildcard Emma Navarro, and is projected to face No.5 seed Elena Rybakina in the quarterfinals.

Champion's Reel: How Veronika Kudermetova won Charleston 500 2021

2021 Charleston 500