Wozniacki makes online comeback to tennis, completes virtual Madrid lineup

Wilson Blade 9

Caroline Wozniacki retired from tennis at this year’s Australian Open, but these new coronavirus circumstances are making the Dane active again, as she’ll play via a PS4 controller at the inaugural Mutua Madrid Open Virtual Pro that will officially kick off on Monday 27th April at 15:00 local time.

With live tennis being on hold until at least July 13th, the Madrid tournament came up with an idea to organize a four-day online video game competition. Sixteen players will be in the WTA draw that features top players, including four Grand Slam champions. Tennis stars will compete from the comfort of their homes in a digitally recreated Manolo Santana Stadium, while spectators will have the option of watching them play thanks to two windows on the screen. There will be four groups of four players and two most successful player from each group will move into the quarterfinals. Then there will be regular quarterfinals, semifinals and the final match.

The ladies will play for a prize purse of €150,000. The winners will donate a portion of their earnings to the tennis players currently struggling financially, while an additional 50,000 EUR will all go towards reducing the social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The complete WTA entry list at the innovative Mutua Madrid Open Virtual Pro is as follows:

Bianca Andreescu (CAN)
Victoria Azarenka (BLR)
Belinda Bencic (SUI)
Kiki Bertens (NED)
Eugenie Bouchard (CAN)
Sorana Cirstea (ROU)
Fiona Ferro (FRA)
Angelique Kerber (GER)
Madison Keys (USA)
Johanna Konta (GBR)
Kristina Mladenovic (FRA)
Karolina Pliskova (CZE)
Carla Suárez Navarro (ESP)
Elina Svitolina (UKR)
Donna Vekic (CRO)
Caroline Wozniacki (DEN)

Who knew that gaming skills would come in handy to tennis players! It will be interesting to see who will be the best in this field. What’s certain is that the competitive spirit of players will be as strong in this virtual environment as it is on real tennis courts.

Fans will be able to follow the tournament in Spanish on PlayStation Espana’s Facebook page and in English on the Mutua Madrid Open’s page. Besides recreating the Caja Magica’s Manolo Santana Stadium in exquisite detail, the organizers have done their best to make the event as close to the real thing as possible, so the broadcast will include commentary, interviews with the players after each match and the presence of special guests. Moreover, each day of competition will include a summary program with the highlights of the day.




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