W.L. Amos Sr. Tennis Classic Main Draw to Start Tuesday
MERCER UNIVERSITY – LEROY PEDDY TENNIS CENTER – OCT 22 – OCT 29, 2017
Rain Hits Macon, Qualifying Second Round Completed
MACON, Georgia, (October 22, 2017) Rain may have delayed play on Monday at the 2017 W.L. Amos Sr. Tennis Classic, but mid afternoon, the dark clouds gave way to whispy clouds and blue skies as the second round of qualifying kicked into high gear on Monday at Mercer University’s Leroy Peddy Tennis Center.
Americans started strong once play began with Ashley Kratzer defeating Nathaly Kurata of Brazil. Other early winners were Ashley Weinhold, Ulrikke Eikeri and Jessica Pegula.
One of the most entertaining matches of the day was the Sabrina Santamaria and Aleksandra Wozniak meeting. Santamaria started off strong going up 5-2 in the first set, but Wozniak fought the wind and Santamaria’s dropshots to get back in the set. Wozniak used her powerful serve to dictate points and force a tiebreaker. Determined to hold onto the set, the tiebreaker was just as close. Santamaria finished off the 1 hour and 20 min set at 7-5 in the tiebreaker with a couple well placed volleys. Santamaria came out strong in the second set leading 3-0, so Wozniak again had to fight back to tie it at 3 a piece.The American’s tactical skills and aggressiveness along with her slice was a key factor in her success in this match. Santamaria continued to press ahead with her plan and that resulted in a second set win of 6-3. Santamaria will face the No. 8 seed, Kratzer from the USA in the qualifying finals on Tuesday.
Main draw action starts Tuesday. Former French Open champion, Francesca Schiavone of Italy is the top seed. 2015 Macon champ, Kateryna Bondarenko of Ukraine is the second seed, followed by Americans Nicole Gibbs and Sachia Vickery at No. 3 and No. 4.
Now in its fifth year, the W.L. Amos Sr. Tennis Classic, has moved up to a USTA Pro Circuit 80K event, with a 32 player singles draw and 16 doubles teams to Macon, along with a 32 player qualifying draw the first weekend. It’s eight days of world class tennis and now the second biggest professional tournament in the state of Georgia in terms of prize money (ATP World Tour 250 event – BB&T Atlanta Open in July is largest) and the longest running professional women’s tennis tournament in the state of Georgia.
Players come to Macon to play for $80,000 in prize money, valuable WTA ranking points and a spot in the first major of 2018, the Australian Open in Melbourne.
22 former Macon participants were in the main draw at the U.S. Open in New York, last month. There are 16 different countries represented in the main draw of singles and doubles.
Highlights of the week include the Pro Am and Player/Sponsor party, and an annual event with free lessons, food and more. Also the players will make visits to local schools to promote tennis as a lifetime sport and the professional event. Tuesday there is a special “Tennis in the Streets” event at noon in Downtown Macon. Play will begin each morning and continue until the slate of matches in singles and doubles is finished for the day.
Monday’s Qualifying Results:
Sabrina SANTAMARIA (USA) def. Aleksandra WOZNIAK (CAN)  7-6(5) 6-3
Ashley KRATZER (USA)  def. Nathaly KURATA (BRA) 6-4 6-3
Ashley WEINHOLD (USA) def. Sophie CHANG (USA)  6-2 7-6(5)
Ulrikke EIKERI (NOR)  def. Caitlin WHORISKEY (USA) 7-6(4) 6-3
Allie KIICK (USA) def. Aliona BOLSOVA ZADOINOV (ESP) 6-4 7-6(5)
Jessica PEGULA (USA) def. Usue Maitane ARCONADA (USA)  7-6(5) 6-4
Lorraine M. GUILLERMO (USA) def. Hanna CHANG (USA) 6-1 6-4
Ann LI (USA) def. Aymet UZCATEGUI (VEN) 6-1 7-6(5)
Tuesday’s play to begin at 10am.
Volunteers are needed and any help is always appreciated. Call Mercer tennis coach and tournament director Eric Hayes at (478) 301-2269.
About the Leroy Peddy Tennis Center
The LeRoy Peddy Tennis Center is the home for Mercer University men’s and women’s tennis. The facility is located just inside the South campus entrance, nestled among its pine tree lined western perimeter and adjacent to MU’s softball stadium and practice fields. The Center features a total of eight courts, aligned in a picturesque bi-level configuration (four courts each on the upper and lower tiers). The lighted venue also has ample parking and seating for fans on either level and a park-like walkway for access between the two sections.
About the USTA Pro Circuit
With approximately 90 tournaments hosted annually throughout the country and prize money ranging from $10,000 to $100,000, the USTA Pro Circuit is the pathway to the US Open and tour-level competition for aspiring tennis players and a frequent battleground for established professionals. The USTA launched its Pro Circuit in 1979 to provide players with the opportunity to gain professional ranking points, and it has since grown to become the largest developmental tennis circuit in the world, offering nearly $3 million in prize money. Last year, more than 1,000 men and women from more than 70 countries competed in cities nationwide. Victoria Azarenka, Eugenie Bouchard, John Isner, Madison Keys, Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori, Sam Querrey and Caroline Wozniacki are among today’s top stars who began their careers on the USTA Pro Circuit.
The W.L. Amos Sr. Foundation
The W.L. Amos Sr. Foundation is the title sponsor of the tournament.
Middle Georgia Tennis Foundation
The mission of the Middle Georgia Tennis Foundation is to raise funds to support tennis programs, especially youth programs in Middle Georgia.
For more information:
On-site PR contact: Rick Limpert (209) 920-7425 or email: Rick.Limpert@gmail.com