Former world number one Venus Williams of the United States is among the top three players who have confirmed participation in the 2012 BMW Malaysian Open.
The women’s tennis tournament, to be held on Feb 27 to March 4 next year at Bukit Kiara Equestrian and Country Resort, will also feature current world number nine Marion Bartoli of France and China’s rising star Peng Shuai, competing for a prize-purse of USD220,000 (RM690,172).
Lawn Tennis Association of Malaysia (LTAM) president Tan Sri Abdul Razak Latiff said reaching its third consecutive year, the tournament which is sanctioned by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Tour will be nothing short of an amazing event.
“Having BMW commitment with the BMW Malaysian Open tournament has provided the springboard for the country to really take tennis to the next level and this is clearly identified through the confirmed participation of some of the most famous and exciting players in the world.
“Building on this foundation, there is no doubt that this event is going to be spectacular,” he said at a press conference, yesterday.
He said the LTAM was also given the privillege to invite two Malaysians to the qualifying rounds of the 2012 event.
“We will choose (the players) from the pool of elite players that we have,” he said.
Meanwhile tournament’s promoter Carbon Worldwide chairman Keld Kristiansen said they were expecting more top players including defending champion Jelena Dokic of Australia to confirm their participation soon.
“We are excited to bring another great line-up, some of the world’s best female tennis players to Malaysia in February.
“Mirroring this maturity in the player field, we are also striving to continually enhance public experience at the event,” he said.
The tournament will see 32 of the world’s leading players competing for the singles title and 16 teams for the doubles title in a knockout competition format.