The Hologic WTA Tour moves back to Europe on Monday, where a host of top players will test themselves on the indoor red clay of Stuttgart at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix.
The draw for the 45th edition of the WTA 500 event was released Sunday, and the field is packed. Seven of the world's Top 10 are included in this year's lineup, led by World No.1 Iga Swiatek.
Swiatek resides at the top of the draw, where she has a first-round bye as a Top 4 seed. Swiatek is on a career-best 19-match winning streak, which includes titles at WTA 1000 events in Doha, Indian Wells and Miami, and two victories at this weekend's Billie Jean King Cup qualifying round.
The top-ranked Swiatek, making her Stuttgart debut, will face either Viktorija Golubic or qualifier Eva Lys in the second round. Her potential quarterfinal opponent could be No.8 seed and reigning US Open champion Emma Raducanu, who opens against qualifier Storm Sanders.
Raducanu played the first professional clay-court match of her career on Friday, which she won over World No.50 Tereza Martincova in the Billie Jean King Cup qualifying round. She was defeated in her second clay-court match by Marketa Vondrousova on Saturday.
This year's draw is out: right at the beginning, some incredibly strong matches like the all-Czech meeting between @KaPliskova and @Petra_Kvitova and 2019 finalist @AnettKontaveit_ versus two-time champion @AngeliqueKerber await us!#porschetennis #PTGP22 pic.twitter.com/ZMepDi5xAi— Porsche Tennis (@PorscheTennis) April 17, 2022
The second quarter is led by No.4 seed Maria Sakkari. After her first-round bye, Sakkari will face someone who is comfortable on clay, either 2021 Roland Garros semifinalist Tamara Zidansek or wildcard Laura Siegemund, who won the Stuttgart title in 2017 and was runner-up in 2016.
At the bottom of that quarter, two former Stuttgart champions will square off in an all-Czech opening round, where No.6 seed and 2018 champion Karolina Pliskova will face 2019 champion Petra Kvitova. Kvitova leads their head-to-head 3-1, but they have not met since 2018.
The third quarter features No.5 seed and 2019 runner-up Anett Kontaveit taking on one of the tournament's top performers, Angelique Kerber, in the first round.
Kerber has had some of her top successes on the home soil of Stuttgart, winning back-to-back titles in 2015 and 2016.
No.3 seed Aryna Sabalenka is in that quarter as well, coming off her tournament debut last year where she went all the way to the final before losing to Ashleigh Barty. After her opening bye this year, Sabalenka could meet the returning Bianca Andreescu in the second round.
Andreescu, the 2019 US Open champion, will play her first match of the 2022 season against wildcard Jule Niemeier in the first round. Andreescu's most recent match took place at Indian Wells in October of 2021.
The fourth quarter has No.2 seed Paula Badosa at the bottom of the draw. After her first-round bye, Badosa will take on either Elena Rybakina or qualifier Nastasja Schunk in the second round. It will be Badosa's main-draw debut at the event. She played qualifying once before, in 2018.
The fourth quarter also features a first-round clash between No.7 seed Ons Jabeur and Marketa Vondrousova, the 2019 Roland Garros finalist and last year's Olympic silver medalist.
The winner of the Jabeur-Vondrousova match will have another tough matchup in the second round against either Coco Gauff or Daria Kasatkina. Gauff will be making her Stuttgart tournament debut this year.