Halep, Stosur roll at TOC

By
Updated: October 30, 2013

Sofia, Bulgaria (SportsNetwork.com) – Top seed Simona Halep and former U.S.
Open champion Sam Stosur were a pair of straight-set round-robin winners
Wednesday at the season-ending WTA Tournament of Champions.

The rising Romanian star Halep handled seventh-seeded Frenchwoman Alize Cornet
6-4, 6-4, while the fourth-seeded Stosur drubbed fifth-seeded Russian Elena
Vesnina 6-3, 6-3 on the indoor hardcourt at Armeets Arena.

This event, in its fifth year, features an eight-woman field that is divided
into two groups. Round-robin play is staged Tuesday through Friday, with the
semifinals on Saturday and a Sunday final.

Group Serdika features Halep (2-0), third-seeded Russian Maria
Kirilenko (0-1), sixth-seeded Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (1-1) and
seventh-seeded Frenchwoman Alize Cornet (1-1). An injured Kirilenko was
replaced in the field by alternate Elina Svitolina (0-1). Pavlyuchenkova
handled the Ukrainian Svitolina 6-2, 6-4 on Wednesday.

Group Sredets is comprised of second-seeded and two-time Tournament of
Champions winner Ana Ivanovic (1-0), Stosur (1-0), Vesnina (0-1) and eighth-
seeded Tsvetana Pironkova (0-1).

On Thursday, Halep will face Svitolina, the former world No. 1 Ivanovic will
encounter Stosur, and Vesnina will battle Pironkova.

The field consists of the six highest-ranked players who won at least one
International Series tournament during the year and did not qualify for last
week’s WTA Championships in Istanbul or are not participating in this week’s
Fed Cup final. Ivanovic and Pironkova were included this week as wild
cards.