The draw is set for the first of two hard court WTA 1000 events this summer. World No. 1 Iga Swiatek is leading a stacked field at the Rogers-presented National Bank Open, but she has a tough road ahead with four other Grand Slam champions in her quarter of the draw.
Swiatek’s predicted quarter-final opponent in her first hard court tournament of the summer is No. 8-seeded Garbiñe Muguruza, but her strained quarter also includes unseeds Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka and Victoria Azarenka. Williams, playing her first hard-court event in 18 months, opens against a qualifier and could face the winner of the first-round match between Azarenka and 12th-seeded Belinda Bencic.
Also in Swiatek’s section is No.13 seed and home favorite Leylah Fernandez, who declared herself fully fit at Friday’s draw ceremony after a foot injury sustained at Roland Garros kept her out of Wimbledon. She also opens against a qualifier and could be Swiatek’s opponent in the third round.
At the end of the quarter, Muguruza meets either four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka or Estonian Kaia Kanepi in their first game of the summer hard court season. The Spaniard retired from this week’s event in San Jose through injury.
There are nine major winners in total in the top half. In the second quarter, Czech Karolina Pliskova, seeded at number 14, and 2021 Roland Garros champion Barbora Krejcikova will meet at the start, while 2019 US Open winner Bianca Andreescu will be the first opponent for the 11th seeded Daria Kasatkina. Maria Sakkari, No. 3, who is a potential opponent in the semifinals for Swiatek along with Ons Jabeur, No. 5, opens against the winner of the all-American opening round match between 2017 US Open winner Sloane Stephens and the Australian Open -Winner of 2020, Sofia Kenin.
In the bottom half of the draw, number two seed Estonian Anett Kontaveit opens against the winner of the match between Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann and wild card Venus Williams. Williams played her first game of the summer at the Citi Open in Washington, DC this week, where she was beaten in Round 1 by Canada’s Rebecca Marino.
Other lower-half highlights include a Round 1 match between No.9 seed Emma Radaucanu and defending champion Camila Giorgi of Italy, and a potential second round meeting between No.10 seed Coco Gauff and Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina . Both face qualifiers in their opening games.
Nine of this week’s top 10 rankings compete in the sixth WTA 1000 event of the season. World No. 9 Danielle Collins is the only gap. She retired last week with an ongoing neck injury.
The main draw at Sobeys Stadium begins on Monday 8th August.