NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Caroline Wozniacki is happy to be back in Connecticut as she tries to re-establish herself as an elite player in women's tennis.
The former No. 1 player in the world was in danger of falling out of the WTA's top 10 before making it to the quarterfinals last week in Cincinnati.
She's hoping to build on that momentum in New Haven, where she has won four of the last five titles. Her lone loss came when she was forced to withdraw from last year's semifinals with a knee injury.
"I feel like I'm on the right track and I feel like I'm playing well, so right now that's what I'm thinking about," she said Sunday. "The U.S. Open is coming up as well, which is a tournament that I am looking very much forward to. I love it there. So, these two tournaments, hopefully, will be good for me."
Wozniacki will play Monday against Shuai Peng of China.
The main draw got underway Sunday when Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki beat Kristina Mladenovic 7-5, 6-1.
Lisicki, from Germany, lost a 2-0 lead in the first set, but never trailed against the Frenchwoman and won the first five games of the second set, which was interrupted by a brief rain delay.
Lisicki, who was little known before Wimbledon, is one of the bigger names in this tournament.
"It's been quite a change, going home and everyone on the streets knows who you are," she said, "It is something different, but it's been nice, because it shows that the hard work pays off."
Just four of the top-10 players in the world are participating in the final tuneup before the U.S. Open. Top-seed Sara Errani is joined by Angelique Kerber, defending champion Petra Kvitova, and Wozniacki.
Marion Bartoli, who beat Lisicki for the Wimbledon title, would have been the fifth. But, she withdrew after announcing her retirement last week.
"She fulfilled her dream," Lisicki said. "She wanted to win Wimbledon her entire life and she did that. So, I'm very happy for her."
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