While the ATP and WTA tournaments in Doha, Prune, Brisbane and Shenzhen have all seen their schedules go to plan, the WTA ASB Classic held in Auckland has been less fortunate.
Auckland has been hit with severe storms which have resulted in play being cancelled on two consecutive days. While this is not uncommon for the ASB Classic, it is not ideal. The last edition of the ASB Classic which was won by the American Lauren Davis, had numerous rain delays during the first few rounds. The final is usually played on a Saturday, however with the recent rain delays the final is currently set for Sunday.
The current schedule includes both quarter finals and semi finals to be played on Saturday, weather permitting! Those in attendance at the tournament will be in for a treat if play gets under way as all of the top 4 seeds are still in contention to lift the title. They include the 2017 WTA Finals champion and the 2015 ASB Classic runner up Caroline Wozniacki, the 2017 WTA Elite Trophy champion and the 2016 ASB Classic runner up Julia Gorges, the current Linz Open champion Barbora Strycova and the 2013 ASB Classic champion Agnieszka Radwanska. All will be determined to start the year on a high especially Aga Radwanska who is chasing her first title since October 2016.
If the current edition of the tournament is to experience more rain delays, the tournament Directors may have no other option but to cancel the 2018 edition. The last WTA tournament to be cancelled due to downpour was the first edition of the State Farm Women’s Tennis Classic held in February 2000 in Scottsdale, Arizona. The result of the first edition saw both Finalists; Lindsay Davenport and Martina Hingis share the prize money and ranking points on offer. Another option available to the tournament Directors is to move play indoors at the ASB Tennis Centre, however if this occurs it is unlikely that there will be space for spectators. The next few days should prove to be interesting!