Former world No.1 Jelena Jankovic headlines Hobart International

Jelena Jankovic
Jelena Jankovic

Former world No.1 Jelena Jankovic, defending champion Alize Cornet and world No.22 Kiki Bertens headline a strong field for Hobart International 2017.

Jankovic is one of eight players set to compete at the tournament for the first time.

The 31-year-old Serbian, ranked No.54, is the third former world No.1 to compete at the Hobart International in the past decade, following appearances from Serena Williams in 2007 and Dinara Safina in 2011.

World No.22 Bertens is the highest-ranked player in the field. The 25-year-old Dutchwoman, a French Open semifinalist in 2016, is a former Hobart International doubles champion.

Frenchwoman Cornet returns to defend her 2016 singles title, aiming to become the first player to do so in the tournament’s 24-year history.

“Both have had great success in Hobart in the past,” tournament director Mark Handley said. 

“Kiki is coming off a career-best season, so we’re excited to welcome her back to Hobart and Alize played a sensational tournament to win in 2016. It’s great she is defending the title.”

The field also includes Czech Lucie Safarova and Italian Sara Errani, two former French Open finalists and top five players, as well as popular German Andrea Petkovic, another former top 10 player.

World No.2 doubles player Kristina Mladenovic and emerging Latvian Anastasija Sevastova also loom as title contenders as do rising stars Ana Konjuh, a US Open quarter-finalist in 2016, and Naomi Osaka, the WTA newcomer of the year for 2016.

“Hobart has consistently attracted some of the most talented and accomplished female athletes in the world and 2017’s instalment is no different,” Handley said.

“We pride ourselves on being the preferred platform for players to prepare for the Australian Open and we are thrilled to have seven proven top-20 performers among the field.”

Hobart International field: Kiki Bertens (NED, ranked No.22), Anastasija Sevastova (LAT, 34), Monica Niculescu (ROU, 38), Alison Riske (USA,.39), Misaki Doi (JPN, 40), Alize Cornet (FRA, 41), Kristina Mladenovic (FRA, 42), Ana Konjuh (CRO, 47), Naomi Osaka (JPN, 48), Sara Errani (ITA, 49), Johanna Larsson (SWE, 50), Annika Beck (GER, 51), Katerina Siniakova (CZE, 52), Julia Goerges (GER, 53), Jelena Jankovic (SRB, 54), Andrea Petkovic (GER, 55), Viktorija Golubic (SUI, 56), Lesia Tsurenko (UKR, 57), Shelby Rogers (USA, 59), Kristyna Pliskova (CZE, 60), Lucie Safarova (CZE, 62), Galina Voskoboeva (KAZ, 64), Kirsten Flipkens (BEL, 65).