Kerber Enjoying Dual Role Of Player And Tournament Ambassador

Angelique Kerber (photo: Bad Homburg Open, Paul Zimmer/Daniel Maurer)

BAD HOMBURG/WASHINGTON, June 22, 2021 (by Michael Dickens)

In addition to being Germany’s top-ranked women’s player, Angelique Kerber is also tournament ambassador for the inaugural WTA 250-series grass court Bad Homburg Open presented by Engel & Völkers that is taking place this week in the town of Bad Homburg vor der Höhe, located in central Germany. She’s excelling both on and off the court in her dual roles.

On Monday, the 2018 Wimbledon champion Kerber put in a short work day on the TC Bad Homburg Centre Court. The World No. 28 beat qualifier Ekaterina Yashina of Russia, who was appearing in the main draw of a WTA tournament for the first time, in just 50 minutes. Then, she stayed after for an on-court interview that was conducted in both German and English for the benefit of both fans in attendance and also a worldwide TV audience.

While the fourth seed Kerber showed her superiority and efficiency on court – reflected by her dominance in certain key statistics such as first-serve points won 78 percent to 48 percent, five breaks in five opportunities compared to not being broken on her own serve, and 53 points won to just 25 for Yashina – afterward, she said her 6-1, 6-1 victory wasn’t as easy as it might have looked.

“No, it was of course not so easy,” Kerber said during the on-court interview. “For me it is a special tournament. Playing here in front of the home crowd is always very nice. Seeing all the fans coming and supporting me is a really great feeling. So, I really enjoyed my match tonight.”

Kerber acknowledged her role – “a lot of jobs” in the words of the on-court interviewer – as both a player and tournament ambassador. “It’s true. I really enjoy everything I am doing here,” she said. “Being on one side, a player who knows what it’s like to play in a tournament, and on the other hand, being part of an organization and seeing how hard it is to make it a such a great tournament.

“I am very happy that it turned out to be such a wonderful tournament. I feel very comfortable in my role as tournament ambassador and I enjoy it. Of course, it’s a very special tournament for me.

“Now, I am looking forward to everything that is to come. I want to stay here as long as possible and then travel to Wimbledon with a lot of self-confidence.”

Next, Kerber will face another Russian, No. 90 Anna Blinkova, in the second round on Wednesday.

Rain washes out Eastbourne play Monday

Rain cancelled all matches in the ATP 250 and WTA 500 Viking International Eastbourne, in Eastbourne, England, on Monday. It means there are now a total of 44 matches scheduled on Tuesday’s order of play, beginning at 10:30 a.m. British Summer Time.

Busy week before Wimbledon fortnight continues

Monday’s first-round of Wimbledon Championships men’s qualifying draw singles at Roehampton was abandoned due to rain and rescheduled for Tuesday. has the revised order of play and the website said Monday night that qualifying will be extended through Friday, June 25.

Meanwhile, on Monday afternoon, the women’s qualifying draw was revealed. It features 128 players who will be vying for 16 available berths in the main draw. Players will have to win three qualifying draw matches to reach the main draw.

The top seed is Maria Camila Osorio Serrano of Colombia, ranked 94th; followed by No. 2 seed Viktoriya Tomova of Bulgaria, ranked 105th; No. 3 seed Sara Errani of Italy, ranked 107th; and No. 4 seed Anna Kalinskaya of Russia, ranked 108th.

Also, No. 5 seed is Anna-Lena Friedsam of Germany, ranked 109th; followed by No. 6 seed Caty McNally of the United States, ranked 111th; No. 7 seed Timea Babos of Hungary, ranked 112th; and No. 8 seed Tsevtana Pironkova of Bulgaria, ranked 113th.

Osorio Serrano, who won her first WTA tour-level title earlier this year on clay at Bogotá, will face No. 255 Liang En-Shuo of Taiwan in her first-round match on Wednesday.

Notable Wimbledon dates this week

The Wimbledon Championships seeds will be announced on Wednesday at 10 a.m. (British Summer Time). The Gentlemen’s and Ladies’ main draws will be announced on Friday starting at 10 a.m. local time. Publication of next Monday’s opening day order of play will be released on Sunday at noon local time.

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