Stars bake bread rolls on "City of Linz Day"

The City of Linz's Kids' Day at the Design Centre was well attended, with children and young people under the age of 15 enjoying the atmosphere at the Upper Austria Ladies Linz with free admission. 

Stars such as Germany's tennis mum Angelique Kerber, last year's winner Anastasia Potapova and Australian Open sensation Dayana Yastremska from Odessa were also very impressed by the ambience at the Design Centre on Media Day.
The former world number one Kerber, who is making her European comeback after maternity leave, won the tournament in Linz in 2013 and is not yet familiar with the Design Centre: "The hall this year is something very special. I'm also happy about the upgrade to WTA 500. I know how difficult it is to organise a tennis tournament. Sandra Reichel and her team have worked hard over the years and have now been rewarded." The 36-year-old has travelled with her almost one-year-old daughter Liana and doesn't want to put any pressure on herself on her return to the tour: "I want to enjoy competing and play a lot of matches, but I have to be patient. The fire is still burning, that's why I'm back."
... and another "baby"
Anastasia Potapova brought her toy poodle "Baby" with her to Linz; the cuddly dog has a reputation as a lucky charm to defend. "Whenever Baby is at a tournament, I always play well," joked the defending champion. The 22-year-old was very fond of the new Swarovski trophy. "As they say: Diamonds are a girl's best friend. This trophy is beautiful, it's the first time that Swarovski has designed a trophy like this. This shiny gold trophy is extra motivation for me."
Ukrainian Yastremska wants to build on her strong form in Melbourne, where she sensationally advanced to the semi-finals as a qualifier: "You can't plan something like this, it just happens. But it also took a lot of mental strength. Now I'm looking forward to Linz and then a short visit to my home country."
Meanwhile, the main competition got underway on Monday: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the winner of the 25th edition of the women's tennis tournament in Linz in 2015, kicked things off. The former world number eleven left Martina Trevisan (Italy) little chance with a 6:4, 6:0 win. Great Britain's Katie Boulter caused a surprise in the second main draw match: she outclassed the sixth seeded Italian Jasmine Paolini 6:2, 6:2.

In the qualifying final, Italy's doubles specialist Sara Errani advanced to the main competition with a 7:6 and 6:4 win over Ella Seidel from Hamburg. Jule Niemeier from Dortmund saw off Nuria Barrizas Diaz from Spain 6:3 and 6:1 in the second qualifying round.
Incidentally, Elise Mertens, the newly crowned number one in the doubles world rankings, will be playing in Linz. The Belgian returned to the top position with her Melbourne triumph (alongside Hsieh Su-wei). She had already held this position in 2021 thanks to her successes at the Australian Open and Wimbledon. She arrived at the players' hotel on Monday afternoon, tired but happy and tanned. Tournament director Sandra Reichel welcomed her with a helium-filled number 1.
Baking with backaldrin-Kornspitz

One of the tournament partners responsible for ensuring that the women's tennis classic in Linz can bake bigger rolls in future is the global company backaldrin-Kornspitz in Asten. At the company headquarters, Wolfgang Mayer from the management welcomed the seeded players Donna Vekic and Ekaterina Alexandrova as well as Austria's hope Sinja Kraus. The trio worked under the expert guidance of master baker Günter Koxeder in the show bakery. Equipped with specially designed cooking aprons ("Let's bake this together"), the three tennis ladies also had a lot of fun at Kornspitz. Sinja Kraus enjoyed the unusual task: "I like doing something away from the tennis court. Baking bread is a very nice idea." Donna Vekic also enjoyed working in the bakery: "I love bread, but I've never baked any myself before, so it was a great experience."

Of course, a detour to backaldrin's own bread museum, the Paneum, was not to be missed. It houses a globally unique collection of exhibits that deal with the thousands of years of history of bread as an eternally popular foodstuff. Recipes, literature, baking tools and equipment - backaldrin owner Peter Augendopler has been collecting exhibits and information on his life's work on the upper floor of the company headquarters for decades.
Kerber comeback and Kraus' commitment
Tomorrow, Tuesday, which will be dominated by LINZ AG, "Angie" Kerber will take part in the tournament. The first hurdle for the young German mum will be the Italian Lucia Bronzetti in the first evening match not before 6.30 pm. Sinja Kraus, who has a wild card, will be the only Austrian woman in the main draw of the Upper Austria Ladies Linz from 8.00 pm "I'm looking forward to your support, come along and cheer me on," says the Viennese player hoping for a full house at her home match on the WTA Tour. Her first round opponent is Clara Burel from France, number 52 in the WTA rankings.