WTA Tour: Five things to watch at the Citi Open

Emma Raducanu plays a shot

The Citi Open marks a busy opening week in August for the WTA Tour and has attracted an intriguing field despite the parallel WTA 500 event in San Jose.

Some big names return to the WTA Tour this week in Washington DC and the Citi Open organisers are keen to make their event something special.

Here we look at five things to watch out for in the coming week at the Citi Open.

The tours come together

There are only a handful of events in the schedules that see the WTA Tour and ATP Tour come together at a single event.

The Citi Open is one of those as it has WTA 250 status and an ATP 500 license.

For British fans this means that favourites Emma Raducanu and Andy Murray will be at the event together.

Emma Raducanu prepares for US Open defence

Delight for Emma Raducanu

Raducanu prepares for her US Open title defence with the build up likely to provide the young star a starkly different experience to last year.

This time last year Raducanu was playing qualifying tournaments rather than picking her own path to the Major.

Her form has been the subject of fierce debate with one camp claiming she has overachieved while others have found her 2022 run underwhelming.

Raducanu opens her Citi Open campaign against tricky Czech Marie Bouzkova.

Home hopes come out

Jessica Pegula at 2022 Madrid Open

American women look set to mount a strong US Open challenge and there are three high profile contenders in the Citi Open field.

US No 1 Jessica Pegula is joined in this field by Madison Brengle and 2017 US Open winner Sloane Stephens.

Pegula has been a multi-surface wonder this season and could break into the top five before the US Open if things go her way.

Venus Williams is back

Some thought she might have played her last match but Venus Williams has returned to the regular WTA Tour for the first time in over a year.

Depending on how she goes we might be treated to a surprisingly active swing from Venus.

There has been no indication of whether she would partner her sister at the US Open.

Dangerous veteran Simona Halep

Simona Halep is a few years younger than Venus Williams but the veteran will be eager to maintain her resurgence and challenge for this title.

Halep has shown promise of once again finding Major-winning form since teaming up with Patrick Mouratoglou.

After her imposing run at Wimbledon, Halep is once again a player to beat and one to watch.