Simona Halep Granted Madrid Open Wildcard Following Doping Ban

Simona Halep, former Wimbledon champion and two-time Grand Slam champion, has been given a wildcard entry to the Madrid Open. This will be her second tournament since her four-year doping ban was reduced to nine months on appeal, and she returned to the WTA Tour last month. The Madrid Open, which is part of the WTA 1,000 series, is one of the leading tournaments outside the four Grand Slams and is a key pillar of the European clay-court season. Halep is a two-time winner of the clay-court event, and it has always been a special tournament for her, with happy memories. She expressed her gratitude for the wildcard opportunity and is looking forward to making more memories at the tournament.

Caroline Wozniacki, former world number one and a former French Open champion, has also received a wildcard entry to the Madrid Open. She returned to the WTA Tour in August after having two children. In the men’s singles, Japan’s injury-hit Kei Nishikori and Spanish teenager Martin Landaluce have also been given wildcard entries.

The ATP has announced that the Madrid Open will launch the trial of a new men’s doubles format, which aims to increase the exposure and marketing appeal. The new format will see 16 spots in the 32-team draw being given to pairs made up of singles players. The event will also feature a streamlined five-day schedule, and the time between shots and changeovers will be reduced to speed up matches.

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The Madrid Open will start on April 22 and conclude on May 5, and it is expected to be an exciting event with top players from around the world competing for the title.

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