The Domain Tennis Centre will host the 26th edition of the Hobart International between January 7-12, serving as the last stop for numerous top-60 players before the first Grand Slam of the season in Melbourne. Mihaela Buzarnescu will lead the field as the only player from the top-30 and the most of those ranked between 40-60 will compete in Hobart, including Zhang Shuai, Maria Sakkari, Belinda Bencic and 2016 champion Alize Cornet. One of the most promising youngsters on the WTA Tour Dayana Yastremska will be among the title favorites as well and the organizers have signed a strong qualifying line-up, with almost all the players being ranked inside the top-100.
A former world no. 5 Eugenie Bouchard will try to reach the main draw together with Evgeniya Rodina, Ana Bogdan, Heather Watson, a former champion Mona Barthel and Katie Boulter and they will all play during the tournament’s Free Family Weekend.
Fans will have the opportunity to visit the Domain Tennis Centre on Saturday and Sunday without a ticket and watch qualifying matches, hit with favorite players and enjoy face painting and live music entertainment. Bouchard received the main draw wild card in 2018 and she will now have to battle through the qualifying matches in order to hit the main draw again, with Barthel who became the first qualifier to win the title here back in 2012.
Another former champion Heather Watson knows everything about qualifying here, reaching the semi-final in 2018 and hoping for a similar run in three weeks time.
“This is one of the strongest qualifying fields we have ever had and it is exciting fans can watch these world-class athletes without needing to buy a ticket – as well as take advantage of the fun, family-friendly activities we have on site across our Family Weekend,” said Hobart International Tournament Director Darren Sturgess.