The Brisbane International have secured their third top five women’s player with Simona Halep, who confirmed she will be competing in January’s tournament.
The 2014 French Open runner-up will join fellow top-tier players Garbine Muguruza and former world number one Maria Sharapova.
This will be Halep’s first appearance in Brisbane, having turned down the Chinese tournament in which she featured in last year to participate. She has won three titles this year, Halep has racked up more than $6.2 million in prize money, emphasising her quality ahead of her highly anticipated debut.
The announcement on Wednesday also confirmed Australia world number 18 Bernard Tomic will join a mens card jam packed with top 20 players. Headlined by ATP World Tour Finalist and current world number three Roger Federer, Brisbane will also host the likes of Kei Nishikori and Croatian Marin Cilic. Tomic said last month he was considering missing the Brisbane tournament, and instead focus on next year’s opener in Sydney. However with a good performance in Brisbane, Tomic could move into the top ten in the rankings.
The Brisbane International begins on January 3–10 at the Queensland Tennis Centre.– Jackson Thomas
Top photo from Simona Halep’s Facebook page.