MONTREAL, August 4, 2018 (Press Release)
The Rogers Cup presented by National Bank official draw took place on Friday at the Espace C2 at the Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth hotel. Eugenie Bouchard from Montreal will face a tough opponent in the first round in Elise Mertens, the tournament’s fourteenth seed.
World No. 1 Simona Halep has a tough quarter of the draw, with possible opponents in Venus Williams, Caroline Garcia and Maria Sharapova. The 2016 Rogers Cup champion does not have an easy road to defending her title in Montreal. A feature first round match between Kristina Mladenovic and Victoria Azarenka promises to be an entertaining one, as both players are looking to regain top form.
— Coupe Rogers (@CoupeRogers) 3. August 2018
On Saturday afternoon, Serena Williams was withdrawing from the WTA Premier Event for personal reasons.
“Of course, we are disappointed that Serena will not be joining us. Fans were very much looking forward to seeing her in action,” said Eugène Lapierre, tournament director of Rogers Cup presented by National Bank. “But beyond the disappointment, the tournament, as a whole, remains a high-level competition. The entire Top 10 is here, along with 22 of the Top 25. There are exciting matches in store from the outset.”
With Serena Williams’ withdrawal, Tatjana Maria of Germany bypasses the qualifying event to take the American’s spot in the main draw. In the first round, she is up against Alizé Cornet of France.
On the Canadian side, both Eugenie Bouchard and Carol Zhao of Richmond Hill have draw tricky opponents. The Montreal native will hope to continue of her recent successful streak, as she recently reached the semi-finals at the WTA International tournament in Gstaad. Her first round opponent is the fourteenth seed Elise Mertens, who will be competing in the semi-finals at the WTA Premier event in San Jose. For her part, Zhao will face Kiki Bertens, the 2018 Wimbledon quarter-finalist.
It was also announced on Friday that Françoise Abanda from Montreal would receive a wild card into the main draw, after fellow Canadian Bianca Andreescu of Mississauga had to withdraw from the tournament due to injury. Abanda is set to face a qualifier in the opening round. There are also a number of Canadians to look out for in the qualifying draw, as eight players are set to compete for a spot in the main draw, including Rebecca Marino of Vancouver, Gabriela Dabrowski from Ottawa, Katherine Sebov from Toronto, and 15-year-old Leylah Annie Fernandez of Laval.
IGA Family Weekend continues on August 4 and 5
Qualifying matches will begin on Saturday as part of the IGA Family Weekend. Until August 5, fans will have free access to the Rogers Cup site where they can see their favourite players in action as well as participate in a variety of scheduled activities including the Ball Hockey Challenge presented by Knapper and a friendly soccer match against members of the Montreal Impact. The matches will take place at 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Confirmed players include Alex Burrows, Xavier Ouellet, Antoine Roussel and Thomas Chabot for the hockey match and Evan Bush, Rod Fanni and Samuel Piette for the soccer match.