Wuhan, Jul 30: The Wuhan Open organizing committee announced Tuesday that 2019 Wimbledon champion Simona Halep would be heading to Wuhan in September for the 2.83-million US dollar WTA Premier 5 tournament.
Since the inception of the Wuhan Open in 2014, Halep, who defeated Serena Williams to claim her first Wimbledon title earlier this month, has competed every year in the central Chinese city. This year's tournament will run from Sept. 22 until 28 at the Optics Valley International Tennis Center.
"I'm really looking forward to returning to the Wuhan Open for the sixth time. Every time we go back, the site has got bigger and better, and the tournament always takes special care of us. So I can't wait to be back again and play in front of the great fans there," said the Romanian.
"Halep has been a loyal supporter of the Wuhan Open since our very first tournament and we are delighted to welcome her back to Wuhan as the Wimbledon champion," said Wuhan Open tournament co-director Li Qiuping.
The Wimbledon champion will celebrate her 28th birthday with fans in Wuhan this year. Li added that the Wuhan Open would look forward to celebrating her birthday with her again.
Halep, who added the Wimbledon crown to the Roland Garros title she won in 2018, has spent a total of 64 weeks as World No1 on the WTA Rankings and currently sits at No 4. Following her Wimbledon triumph, Halep was honored by her country and named as Romania's Olympic flag bearer at Tokyo 2020.
A firm fan favourite at the Wuhan Open for her energy and courage displayed on court, Halep is one of the most popular players on the WTA Tour and was awarded the WTA Fan Favourite Award in 2017 and in 2018.
Her best result at the Wuhan Open came in 2016 where she reached the semi-final, losing out to the eventual champion Petra Kvitova. (XINHUA)