Mercury Insurance Open 2012: Marion Bartoli Highlights U.S. Open Tune-Up

CARLSBAD, CA - AUGUST 07: Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland prepares to return a backhand to Vera Zvonareva of Russia during the final of the Mercury Insurance Open presented by Tri-City Medical at the La Costa Resort and Spa on August 7, 2011 in Carlsbad, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

The 2012 Mercury Insurance Open is set to begin Monday. The tournament has typically served as a key warm-up for the U.S. Open.

The 2012 Mercury Insurance Open serves as a key warm-up to the U.S. Open. Recently, big names in women's tennis have flocked to the Carlsbad, Calif. tournament, including Venus Williams, Maria Sharapova, and last year's champion and current world No. 2, Agnieszka Radwanska. This year's iteration doesn't quite feature the same firepower as years past, but the likes of No. 8 Marion Bartoli, No. 16 Dominika Cibulkova and No. 36 Christina McHale should provide plenty of tight competition.

First-round action begins Monday at 2:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. local) and continues through Tuesday. The tournament runs through the finals Sunday, July 22, with semifinals taking place that Saturday.

Television coverage begins with the quarterfinals on Friday, July 20. ESPN 2 will show matches live from 1:00 to 3:00 a.m. ET (10:00 p.m. to midnight local) on Friday and Saturday. Sunday's final will take place from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET. Those with the Tennis Channel can watch matches on tape delay.

For more on the 2012 Mercury Insurance Open stay tuned to SB Nation's Tennis Hub and check out the tournament's official site.

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