Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki, both Grand Slam champions and former World No.1 players, head the list of the eight players who received main-draw wild cards for the 2023 US Open.
The wild card recipients for the year's last Grand Slam event were announced by the USTA on Wednesday. They will join 104 direct entries and 16 qualifiers in the 128-player main draw, which starts on Monday, August 28.
Seven-time Grand Slam singles champion Williams will contest her home major for the 24th time in her illustrious career. The 43-year-old reached the final in her US Open debut in 1997 as a teenager, and she went on to win back-to-back US Open titles in 2000 and 2001.
Just this week, Williams notched her first Top 20 win in four years when she upset No.16 Veronika Kudermetova in the first round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.
Like Williams, Wozniacki also reached the US Open final as a teenager, in 2009. Denmark's Wozniacki made a second US Open final in 2014 and won her first Grand Slam title at the 2018 Australian Open.
The 33-year-old Wozniacki was away from tour and raising her family for three-and-a-half years before she returned to action last week in Montreal, where she beat Kimberly Birrell in her comeback match.
Wimby 🏼 you’ll forever be special. Winning my first Grand Slam title @Wimbledon in singles here is a blessing.— Clervie Ngounoue (@ClervieNgounoue) July 18, 2023
Thank you to all my team and my family for the support in this journey, there’s more to come🙏🏿
📸 @lukemayes8 @antoinecouvercelle @kopatschphoto pic.twitter.com/V4Yd2BP4AA
Four more Americans joined Williams as main-draw wild card recipients for the year's final major. Clervie Ngounoue, the 17-year-old who won the Junior Wimbledon singles title this summer, is one of that group and will make her Grand Slam main-draw debut.
The other American hopes who received wild cards are 23-year-old Kayla Day, 19-year-old Ashlyn Krueger and 18-year-old Robin Montgomery, who will all be making return trips to the main draw in New York City.
In the reciprocal wild card exchange between three of the Grand Slam tournaments, Australia's Storm Hunter, a Top 5 player in doubles, and former Top 40 player Fiona Ferro of France received the two remaining US Open main-draw wild cards.
Also announced on Wednesday, nine Americans received wild cards into the US Open qualifying draw: Liv Hovde, Katrina Scott, Makenna Jones, McCartney Kessler, Mary Stoiana, Valerie Glozman, Fiona Crawley, Chloe Beck and Katherine Hui.