Photo: Martin Sudorjak
Today Tennis Canada, in partnership with Via Rail, announced the remaining wild cards for the 2022 National Bank Open presented by Rogers. The three Canadians will gain entry to the main draw of the tournament that begins on Monday August 8 and will finish on Sunday August 14. Canada will be well represented with five players in the main draw and three more in qualifying.
Earlier this month, 2019 National Bank Open and US Open Champion Bianca Andreescu was awarded a top 20 wildcard into the main draw, along with seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams. Andreescu is coming off a second round appearance at the All England Club in Wimbledon, while Williams will be playing in her first WTA Tour singles event since August of 2021.
Marino, Zhao, and Sebov Awarded Main Draw Entry
Canadians Rebecca Marino, Carol Zhao and Katherine Sebov have been awarded the final three wild card spots to compete in the main draw of the 2022 National Bank Open. All three will look to make waves in the main draw and take advantage of the home crowd. Rebecca Marino (Vancouver, BC) will look to better her run at the 2021 National Bank Open. Last year she defeated Madison Keys in the first round followed by Paul Badosa in the second round before losing to No. 1 seed Aryna Sabalenka in the Round of 16. This year Marino broke back into the WTA Tour top 100 in early July, thanks to deep runs at multiple ITF tournaments in 2022, including a final at W25 Cancun in Mexico, capturing the title at the ITF W60 Arcadia, and a finals appearance at the ITF W60+H Irapuato in Mexico.
Carol Zhao (Vaughan, ON) comes to Toronto on a high having won back-to-back ITF tournaments in June and July. Prior to both tournaments, Zhao was ranked No. 359 in the world but has since ascended into the top 200. Followed by a quarter-final in Evansville, USA, she will be playing the National Bank Open with plenty of confidence that could motivate the Canadian.
Katherine Sebov (Toronto, ON) has been very consistent leading up to the 2022 National Bank Open. In three of her past four ITF tournaments Sebov has made the semi-final, and in her most recent tournament in Evansville, USA, lost in the quarter-final round. Home court advantage, strong performances in recent months, and a first-time entry to the main draw could prove to be an edge for the Canadian looking to advance in front of a home crowd.
“Rebecca, Carol and Katherine will be very motivated to upset some big names at the tournament,” said Karl Hale, Tournament Director of the National Bank Open in Toronto. “They will have a very passionate home crowd behind them and the three of them are playing with a lot of confidence right now.”
Next Gen Canadians in Qualifying Round
Two Next Gen Canadians have been awarded wild cards for the qualifying round which is set to begin on August 6 and 7. At only 15 years of age, Victoria Mboko (Toronto, ON) is already ranked No. 13 in the ITF Junior Rankings. She also had a very strong Junior Wimbledon, where she made the girl’s semi-final in singles and made the girl’s doubles final with Kayla Cross. Continuing her momentum from Wimbledon, Mboko won her first professional title at the ITF Saskatoon Challenger tournament in July.
Teenager Kayla Cross (London, ON) has also been named a qualifying wild card. The 17-year-old is currently ranked No. 26 in the ITF Junior Ranking and has made a name for herself on the junior tour. Earlier this year Cross partnered with Mboko at both junior Australian Open and Wimbledon Grand Slams making it to the girl’s doubles finals at both tournaments.
Mboko and Cross are rising stars for Canada and will be ready to test their game against a very strong qualifying list that includes former Grand Slam winner Sloane Stephens.
Wild Card Trade with French Tennis Federation
Tennis Canada and the French Tennis Federation have traded wild card entries and as a result a French player that has yet to be named will be awarded a qualifying wild card. Tennis Canada received a Roland Garros pre-qualifying wild card for Carol Zhao in 2021 in return.
Wild Card Tournament
A pre-qualifying tournament will be played to determine the fourth and final qualifying wild card spot August 2-5 at Sobeys Stadium in Toronto.