>> Saturday, May 5, 2012
The 2012 staging of the Mutua Madrid Open in Madrid, Spain is turning out to be a fun tournament for tennis fans of the ATP and WTA tours. From the 3rd to the 14th of May, not only will the Mutua Madrid Open offer the best tennis from the men's and women's professional tours, it will also become a major entertainment centre for the spectators of all ages who come to visit the Caja Mágica. Headlining live tennis action on Saturday, May 5 are WTA superstars Venus Williams, Sam Stosur and Na Li. Watch 2012 Madrid Open live tennis online here.
Venus is the runner-up in 2010’s Mutua Madrid Open and she's returning to the Caja Mágica’s central court where she will take on Simona Halep in the first round of the women’s draw. Former world number one and seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus, who lost in 2010’s final to Aravane Rezai, couldn’t play in last year’s edition, but will make her return to the Caja Mágica’s Manolo Santana Centre Court this Saturday as a wild card. Her rival in what will be the closing match of the day is Simona Halep, who currently occupies the number 47 place in the ranking.
Since returning from a seven month absence caused by Sjögren's syndrome, five-time Wimbledon champion Venus has shown flashes of her former dominance by collecting three Top 20 wins en route to making quarterfinals in Miami and Charleston. Ranked No.137 as recently as February, Williams has soared 67 spots since then. Williams' nine career clay court titles are just one behind Anabel Medina Garrigues for most amongst active players. Simona Halep is coming off her best result of the season - a semifinal showing in Fès that featured a 62 61 rout of No.1 seed Medina Garrigues in the quarterfinals. Halep's best two career results - runner-up showings at Fès in 2010 and 2011 - occurred on clay.
On the courts for the night shift will be 18 year-old Spaniard Garbiñe Muguruza, who will be playing at the Mutua Madrid Open for the first time this year. She has shone so far at this early stage in her career, but has a daunting task ahead of her, as she will be up against China’s Na Li, who reached the semi-finals at the last edition of the tournament. Li is also the defending French Open champion after becoming the first Asian last year to win a singles Grand Slam trophy.
Other WTA matches in the day feature seeded players. France’s Marion Bartoli (seventh seed) and another Romanian, Sorana Cirstea will battle eache other to advance to the second round while Australia’s Samantha Stosur, reigning US Open champion, goes against Croatia’s Petra Martic. Other matches this Saturday in the main women’s draw include the following: Mona Barthel vs Julia Goerges in a battle of promising German players, Iveta Benesova v Klara Zakopalova and Spain’s Silvia Soler v Tamira Paszek.
The qualifying stage of the Mutua Madrid Open’s men’s singles event kicks off this Saturday, where seven places in the main draw are up for grabs.
Six Spaniards will be fighting it out to get progress past this stage, including Daniel Gimeno-Traver who is the most distinguished member of ‘la Armada’ taking part. He will take on veteran French player Arnaud Clement. The winner of that encounter will take on either Matthew Ebden or Frederico Gil for a place in the main draw.
Number one seed in the qualifying stage Santiago Giraldo will have Romania’s Marius Copil as his first opponent. Other illustrious names include Potito Starace, who will face Under-18 Mutua Madrid Open champion Adam Sanjurjo; Russia’s Igor Andreev (seventh seed) will face Germany’s Michael Berrer; and Romania’s Victor Hanescu will face Argentina’s Eduardo Schwank.
Other Spaniards competing in the qualifying stage are Daniel Muñoz-De la Nava, who will take on Germany’s Philipp Petzschner; Hasier Pastor plays Alejandro Falla in the first round; Iñigo Cervantes is up against Adrian Ungur; and Roberto Bautista-Agut faces Bjorn Phau.
This Saturday will also see the men enter the action in the first round of the men’s qualifying stage, which will feature six Spaniards, among them the winner of the under-18 Mutua Madrid Open, Adam Sanjurjo. The two top-seeded men from this stage, Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo and Alejandro Falla, will face Romania’s Marius Copil and young Spaniard Hasier Pastor.
Watch the 2012 Madrid Open live tennis action online via TennisTv.com.