With about one month until the first ball is played at the 2024 Australian Open, we have a sneak peek at the women's doubles entry list. This is not a comprehensive listing, but nevertheless, there are still surprises contained in it.
Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula plan to play the first Grand Slam of the year in women's doubles. Pegula mentioned at the WTA Finals that the pair would scale back their doubles play to focus on singles, but that seems unlikely before the 2024 Paris Olympics because they want to compete together for Olympic gold.
Both rank in the top ten for highest-earning female athletes in 2023 partly because of their participation (and success) in both singles and doubles.
The women's doubles pairings at the Australian Open are very intriguing
Perhaps the biggest surprise on the list is Taylor Townsend's partner. Townsend played with Canadian Leylah Fernandez frequently in 2023 and with great success. The two were the 2023 Miami Open and French Open finalists. She has also played with Americans Caty McNally and Alycia Parks, but in Melbourne, Taylor will have a new partner.
Townsend's new partner is Brazailian Beatriz Haddad Maia. Haddad Maia usually plays women's doubles with Victoria Azarenka. It is unclear if this is a new long-term partnership or if Towsend and Haddad Maia will resume playing with Fernandez and Azarenka in future tournaments.
Speaking of new partners, the Czech Republic duo of Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova announced that their doubles partnership was over at the end of 2023. The pair is a former World No. 1 team, winning the Golden Slam consisting of 16 titles including seven Grand Slams and a gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. It remains to be seen if the two will reunite to defend their title at the 2024 Paris Olympics.
The 2024 Australian Open doubles pairings show that both have moved on and found new partners. Krejcikova will pair with German Laura Siegemund, and Siniakova is entered with Australian Storm Hunter. If the former teammates face against each other in the women's doubles draw, it will be fun to watch.