- With a strong player field, the competition during the 84th annual Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, promises to be fierce. But the ATP World Tour and Olympus US Open Series tennis action is just the start of the activities on tap at the upcoming event at the LA Tennis Center on the campus of UCLA.
World No. 2 and Wimbledon semifinalist Novak Djokovic, the 2008 Australian Open champion, is joined by former event champions Sam Querrey and Radek Stepanek to headline the singles field for the tournament.
Joining them will be Americans James Blake, Robby Ginepri and Mardy Fish as well as international stars Marcos Baghdatis, Ernests Gulbis and Feliciano Lopez.
In addition to these marquee singles stars, the doubles field will be headlined by five-time Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, champions Bob and Mike Bryan. The Bryans are tied for the Open Era record with 61 career titles and look forward to breaking it in their hometown event.
There will be plenty of other action for fans during this year's Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz. All the events kick off on Friday, July 24, and continue until Monday, August 2. Here's a glimpse at the action that is on tap:
The tennis gets underway at noon on Friday, July 23 at the UCLA Sycamore Canyon Courts with the Wild Card Shootout. Eight players will take part in a double-elimination match tie-break competition with the winner earning a wild card into the 2010 Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, main draw.
On Friday night, July 23, Keith Urban and the Avett Brothers will perform at the LA Tennis Center beginning at 8 p.m. as part of the Starry Night Benefit Concert, presented by the GRAMMY Foundation.
On Saturday, July 24, Andre Agassi and John McEnroe will return to the LA Tennis Center at 7:30 p.m. as part of Stars Under the Stars, presented by Grubb & Ellis, an evening of tennis and entertainment to benefit the Andre Agassi Foundation for Education. Joining Agassi and McEnroe will be fellow tennis legends Jim Courier, Michael Chang and Pam Shriver along with comedian Jon Lovitz and rock star Gavin Rossdale.
On Monday, July 26, the tournament begins in earnest at Straus Stadium at noon. Before play begins, defending champion Sam Querrey will appear at the Jackie Tatum / Harvard Recreation Center at 10 a.m. to announce the Center's courts will be renovated as part of the Fresh Courts program from American Express and the USTA.
Opening night at the Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, on Monday will include a ceremony for the 2010 Tournament Honoree Jim Courier. The former world No. 1 and 1997 tournament champion will appropriately receive this honor on USTA Member Appreciation Night.
Kid's Day returns on Tuesday, July 27. The event begins at 9:30 a.m., and will include clinics and tips from ATP World Tour players. Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Koretz is also expected to attend this event.
Free tickets are available to the tennis action on Monday-Wednesday. On Monday and Tuesday, fans who bring a serviceable tennis racquet to donate to the VIP will call window will get one free ticket to that day's session. On Wednesday, fans bringing a new K-12 book will get a free ticket.
The excitement of ESPN's Game Day desk returns to the Tennis Center Friday-Sunday. ESPN talent and ATP World Tour players will appear at the desk at it's new location on Bruin Walk as part of ESPN2's coverage of the Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz.
Following the completion of the tournament, on Monday, August 2, the LA Tennis Center will play host to KLOS Rocking the Net Starring Bret Michaels to benefit the Southern California Tennis Association. Tesla will also perform as part of the concert that evening.
ESPN2 will broadcast eight hours of live coverage of this year's Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, including singles quarterfinal, semifinal and championship matches. Tennis Channel will again provide significant additional broadcast coverage, including singles quarterfinal and doubles championship matches.
Tickets for all these events are on sale now through Ticketmaster. Additional ticket information can be found at www.FarmersClassic.com or by calling 310-824-1010, ext. 251.
ABOUT THE FARMERS CLASSIC PRESENTED BY MERCEDES-BENZ
The Farmers Classic, presented by Mercedes-Benz, has been played every year since 1927, making it the longest-running annual professional sporting event in Los Angeles. Played since 1984 at the LA Tennis Center on the campus of UCLA, the tournament is part of the Olympus US Open Series, the six-week summer tennis season linking 10 ATP World Tour and Sony Ericsson WTA Tour events to the US Open. Proceeds from the Farmers Classic Presented by Mercedes-Benz benefit the grassroots programs of the non-profit Southern California Tennis Association (SCTA) and UCLA. The SCTA offers programs, leagues, and tournaments involving 300,000 juniors and 50,000 adults and seniors. Information on tickets and the tournament can be found at www.FarmersClassic.com or by calling 310-824-1010.