The only other Indian with a straight entrance for the ITF Women’s Open, which will be hosted by the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association in Bengaluru starting on January 14, is bronze medallist Ankita Raina from the Asian Games. Ranked 208th in singles and runner-up in the last edition, she is included in the main draw list with 20 direct entrants, 4 wild cards, and 8 qualifiers. With four receiving wild cards for the main draw and five competing in the qualifications from January 14–15, the Indians could have as many as nine players in the singles main event.
Local stars Suhita Maruri (singles ranking 1,239) and Soha Sadiq (singles ranking 823) are among the Indian wild-card entrants.
With a singles ranking of 143rd, Latvia’s Darja Semenistaja is the highest-ranked athlete in the competition.
In addition to USD 40,000 in prize money, the winner of the competition will receive 50 WTA points.
KSLTA Vice-President and Minister of IT, BT, and RDPR for Karnataka, Priyank Kharge, spoke about the competition. “The KPB Trust ITF Women’s Open not only celebrates athletic excellence but also serves as a crucial stepping stone for Indian players, who gain a home advantage as they compete on familiar turf.” “The event has played a pivotal role in nurturing local talent, and contributing to the growth of women’s tennis in our nation and creating top-class athletes.” “This event is extremely important for us as it’s one of the few ITF W50 events in the world, and we welcome the sporting ambassadors from 21 countries to come and experience the hospitality of Bengaluru, which is in pursuit of becoming the global sporting destination,” he wraps up.