2021 Mercer Tennis Classic Main Draw Singles Underway
Top 2 Seeds Advance
MERCER UNIVERSITY – John Drew Smith Tennis Center – OCT 18 – OCT 24, 2021
USTA Pro Circuit 80K Event
MACON, Georgia, (October 20, 2021) Wall to wall action as the Mercer Tennis Classic main draw singles began on Wednesday. Doubles will be back on the schedule Thursday afternoon as matches run all week, Oct. 18-24 at the John Drew Smith Tennis Center in Macon.
“We are loving these evening matches. The weather has been perfect and the crowds have turned out to watch,” stated Tournament Director and Mercer Head Men’s and Women’s Tennis Coach, Eric Hayes.
Early first round winners on Wednesday morning included top seed Madison Brengle and No. 5 seed Renata Zarazua of Mexico.
Second rounds of singles and doubles will be on Thursday.
Wednesday’s night match was again well attended and well received. Young Americans, Hailey Baptiste and Emma Navarro did battle. Baptiste has had a hot summer into the fall and Navarro is the NCAA singles champ. Navarro’s consistency brought her to a 5-2 lead in the opener. Baptiste tried to force a break at 2-5, but Nararro used a variety of shots to take Baptiste off the court and laced winners down the line. First set Navarro.
Macon high schools that won tennis state championships were honored before the match. Stratford Academy on the boys side and First Presbyterian Day on the girls side.
The women’s event will feature a 32-player singles qualifying draw, a 32-player singles main draw and a 16-team doubles draw with a field made up of well-known professional players as well as up-and-coming junior tennis stars.
Play is scheduled to begin at 10 am each day.
New for 2021 are night matches during the week. (Please check the order of play each day for specific matches and times.)
Tuesday October 19 – Mercer Night with free admission with Mercer ID
Wednesday October 20 – Macon Tennis Legends Night
Thursday October 21 – Hero’s Night – Honoring NJTL, Autism Awareness and Veterans
Now in its ninth year and fifth year as an W80 event, the Mercer Tennis Classic will once again feature many of the best women tennis players in the world. It is the second biggest professional tournament in the state of Georgia in terms of prize money (ATP World Tour 250 event – Truist Atlanta Open in July, is the largest). It is also the longest running professional women’s tennis tournament in the state of Georgia. The event has been showcased on the Tennis Channel.
Tickets will be available onsite and online this year. $5 per day and $20 for the entire week.
The Mercer Tennis Classic has featured players with major titles, including 2014 Macon singles champ, Kateryna Bondarenko, of Ukraine, and her sister, Alona, who she teamed with to win the 2008 Australian Open Doubles title, and 2010 French Open singles champion Francesca Schiavone, of Italy, who was the tournament’s top seed in 2018.
The event will adhere to all government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions.
This tournament will be streamed live on www.usta.com/procircuit.
Tournament volunteers are needed and any help is always appreciated. Call Mercer tennis coach and tournament director Eric Hayes at (478) 301-2269.
About the John Drew Smith Tennis Center
The John Drew Smith Tennis Center (JDSTC) is regarded as one of the top 25 public municipal facilities in the nation by Tennis Magazine and the United States Tennis Association. It has 24 tennis courts, 6 pickleball courts, a beautiful observation deck and pro shop. The facility is a haven for programming for juniors, adults, and everyone in the community. John Drew Smith Tennis Center is renowned for hosting local, state, and national tennis events. Tennis players not only from the state of Georgia but all over the country, are familiar with JDS. Almost every competitive junior player from the state of Georgia in the last 30 years has played at this renowned facility. The activity is so extensive and the atmosphere is so conducive to tennis that, in 2005, Racquet Sports Industry (RSI) named John Drew Smith Tennis Center the Municipal Facility of the Year.
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.
For more information:
On-site PR contact: Rick Limpert (209) 920-7425 or email: Rick.Limpert@gmail.com Website: www.ustamaconclassic.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MaconTennisClassic/ Instagram: wl_amos_tennis