Indian Wells, CA, USA, 6 March 2018 |

Ash Barty has landed in a stacked section of the draw as she embarks on her campaign this week in the Californian desert at Indian Wells.

Barty, seeded 16th, received a first-round bye and will play the winner of the match between Donna Vekic and Maria Sakkari.

Should she progress, a projected third-round meeting against 17th seed CoCo Vandeweghe would be next.

In the fourth round, it’s likely to be Garbine Muguruza, should the Wimbledon champion get past either Maria Sharapova, Agnieszka Radwanska or Naomi Osaka in the third round.

> TV GUIDE: catch the Aussies in action at Indian Wells!

Daria Gavrilova faces a similarly tough path to the title.

The 26th seed opens against either wildcard Kayla Day or a qualifier, but would likely meet in-form seventh seed Caroline Garcia in the last 32.

Waiting in the fourth round could be either two-time major champion Angelique Kerber (seeded 10th) or defending champion Elena Vesnina (24th).

> WTA Indian Wells main draw

Sam Stosur opens against Lauren Davis for a shot at 14th seed Kristina Mladenovic in the second round.

The winner of that match would progress to an expected meeting in round three with 22nd seed Elise Mertens, before potentially taking on top-ranked Simona Halep in the last 16.

In qualifying, Ajla Tomljanovic thrashed Mariana Duque-Marino 6-3 6-0 to advance to a final-round stoush with Sara Sorribes Tormo, while Arina Rodionova fell 6-3 6-3 at the first hurdle to fourth seed Johanna Larsson.

The men’s qualifying draw was also released on Monday; wildcard Thanasi Kokkinakis will take on No.5 seed Marcos Baghdatis in the first round.