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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 June 2018

WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2018: Lowdown on all you need to know as Halep, Svitolina, Muguruza, Kerber and Sharapova compete

The start of two weeks of tennis action in Dubai begins with the women's tournament, which takes place between February 19-24.

World No 2 Simona Halep leads the field for the 2018 WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship. Mast Irham / EPA
World No 2 Simona Halep leads the field for the 2018 WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship. Mast Irham / EPA

What: Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

Where: Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium.

When: The women's WTA event takes place between February 19-24, with the men's ATP event running from February 26 to March 3.

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Who is coming: World No 2 Simona Halep, who lost in the final of the Australian Open in January, leads the field for the 18th staging of the women's event in Dubai.

The Romanian will be aiming to repeat her 2015 title success.

Defending champion Elina Svitolina, the world No 3, is back looking to become only the third player to successfully win back-to-back titles in Dubai.

Seven of the top 10 in the WTA rankings are competing in Dubai. Garbine Muguruza (No 4), Karolina Pliskova (No 5), Caroline Garcia (No 7), Angelique Kerber (No 9) and Julia Goerges (No 10).

Maria Sharapova, the five-time major winner and former world No 1, is a wild card entrant for the event. The Russian's best past result in Dubai is being runner-up in 2006.

Maria Sharapova has a wild card to compete in Dubai where she will bid to win the title for the first time. Quinn Rooney / Getty Images
Maria Sharapova has a wild card to compete in Dubai where she will bid to win the title for the first time. Quinn Rooney / Getty Images

History: Svitolina won last year's final, beating current world No 1 Caroline Wozniacki 6-4, 6-2. Justine Henin is the event's most successful ever player, having won four times in Dubai between 2003 and 2007. Venus Williams is next up with three titles.

Tickets: Grandstand ticket prices for the WTA event start at Dh55 for opening rounds to Dh735 for the ATP finals, with daily Prime A and Prime B tickets and season tickets also available. Tickets are available at the box office, open from 9am-9pm every day. Go to http://www.dubaidutyfreetennischampionships.com/en/tickets for ticket sales.