By Tucker Verdi
Simona Halep has secured the top seed at the Miami Open, a first for the three-time Grand Slam runner-up and current World No. 1.
Halep headlines a packed 2018 tournament that includes former World No. 1’s and Grand Slam champions. This year’s Australian Open winner Caroline Wozniacki leads the bottom half of the draw as the No. 2 seed while two-time Grand Slam champ Garbiñe Muguruza lands in the No. 3 seed and could meet Halep in the semifinal.
Elina Svitolina, who helped with the draw, is the No. 4 seed and is on course to face Wozniacki for a spot in the final if the seeds hold. Karolína Pliskova, Jelena Ostapenko, and Caroline Garcia are the No. 5-7 seeds, respectively.
Three past Grand Slam winners round out the top 10 with Venus Williams (No. 8), Petra Kvitova (No. 9), and Angelique Kerber (No. 10)
Other notable seeds include last year’s Miami Open champion Johanna Konta as the No. 11 seed and Americans Sloane Stephens, Madison Keys, and Coco Vandeweghe as the No. 13, 14, and 16 seeds, respectively.
While all seeded players are given a bye into the second round, one of the most intriguing matchups will occur in the first round.
Naomi Osaka, fresh off her first WTA title at Indian Wells earlier today, will take on 23-time Grand Slam champ and former World No. 1 Serena Williams, who herself is playing in just her second tour event back after giving birth in September of last year.
Tournament Director James Blake said, “That’s just the luck of the draw,” when asked about the pairing. “I think the fan’s will be treated to what could easily be a final in the first round.”
For the entire Women’s Singles Draw visit miamiopen.com/draws-and-order-of-play
About the Miami Open presented by Itaú
The 2018 Miami Open will be played March 19-April 1 at the Crandon Park Tennis Center in Miami. The two-week combined event is owned and operated by IMG. The Miami Open is one of nine ATP Masters 1000 Series events on the ATP calendar, a Premier Mandatory event on the WTA calendar, and features the top men's and women's tennis players in the world. The tournament is widely regarded as the most glamorous on the ATP and WTA calendars because of its exotic Miami location, thriving nightlife, five-star hotels and restaurants, beautiful weather and beaches, and its celebrity appeal. For ticket information, call +1.305.442.3367 or visit www.miamiopen.com.
Itau is the largest Latin America privately owned bank, with approximately 94,000 employees and operations in 19 countries throughout the Americas, Asia and Europe. Itaú’s relationship with sport goes back to the 1970s, when Itaú first sponsored the Itaú Tennis Cup in Brazil in 1970. Itaú has been a sponsor of the Miami Open for the last six years, and also sponsors the Rio Open, the only combined ATP/WTA event in South America. Itaú also supports the Brazilian Women’s Tennis Circuit, only female professional tournament in South America, certified by the Brazilian Tennis Confederation (CBT) and the International Tennis Federation (ITF), as well as the Tennis Institute Training Center, responsible for the development of young, new talent.
IMG is a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media, operating in more than 30 countries. The company represents and manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages hundreds of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is one of the largest independent producers and distributors of sports media. IMG also specializes in sports training; league development; and marketing, media and licensing for brands, sports organizations and collegiate