The WTA stars warm up their engines in Madrid

Antonio Arenas Mutua News, Women's Tennis

The biggest names in the WTA competition have already taken their first steps this year in the Manolo Santana Stadium as they fine tune their game for this edition of the Mutua Madrid Open. Naomi Osaka, Garbiñe Muguruza, Kiki Bertens, Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova were some of the first players to arrive in Madrid for the second WTA 1000 of the season.

Naomi Osaka comes to the Caja Mágica having won her fourth Grand Slam in Australia. The Japanese player landed in Madrid with very high expectations as she bids to don the Mutua Madrid Open crown for the first time.

Another player hoping for her first title in Madrid is Garbiñe Muguruza. The Spaniard has already had a chance to train in the Caja Mágica and get a feel of the clay. The Spanish-Venezuelan player’s confidence is sky-high on the eve of the competition after a spectacular start to the 2021 season, in which she has racked up 23 wins, and she has one simple goal; to lift the title in front of her home fans.

The tournament’s defending champion, Kiki Bertens, has also had a taste of the red stuff. After a hesitant start to the year due to injury. The Dutch player arrives in Madrid hoping to turn around her fortunes from recent tournaments. Where better to do so than here, where she tasted glory two years ago?

Another of the WTA stars who already knows what it is to triumph in the Spanish capital is Simona Halep. The two-time Mutua Madrid Open champion has also graced the clay in the Manolo Santana Stadium this week. The Romanian, who frequently cites the Mutua Madrid Open as one of her favourite tournaments, has a chance to equal Petra Kvitova’s record of 3 titles in Madrid.

On a day that the Manolo Santana Stadium was replete with big names, Czech player Karolina Pliskova also tested out the court. The ex-world No. 1 comes to Madrid after a mercurial start to the year intent on rediscovering the form that took her to the pinnacle of the WTA ranking.