Serena Williams won this event three times in her career and she will make one more appearance this year. The American arrived in Toronto together with her sister Venus who will play at this event as well. Venus returned last week in Washington losing the first round but playing a rather competitive match. Serena returned at Wimbledon also losing in the opening round.
Speaking ahead of the event, the director Karl Hale hinted that this will be the last time the sister play at this event which is a shame but also not that surprising:
WTA Draw confirmed for National Bank Open Toronto including Swiatek, Fernandez, Serena Williams, Andreescu, Osaka and Raducanu
"The two of them have a really special place with me and I have a very close relationship with them. They’ve done so much for this sport and we want to give them a great (possibly) last experience in Toronto."
The arrival of the sisters created a lot of buzz for the event with fans rushing to buy tickets and see them play. Venus never won this event but she did play in one final a couple of years ago. Despite all of that she's beloved in Canada and the reception has been warm:
"The fans have reacted just incredibly since we announced that they’re playing, and ticket sales have gone through the roof. It’s just tremendous for us to have them here in Toronto.”