STANFORD, Calif. – Main-draw wild cards for the 2013 Bank of the West Classic have been issued to two-time NCAA singles champion Nicole Gibbs and former world No. 4 Daniela Hantuchova.
Gibbs recently completed her junior year at Stanford University, leading the Cardinal to the NCAA team title while capturing her second consecutive NCAA singles title and earning All-America honors for the third time. With her team and individual titles this year, she became the first player to win both championships since 2009.
Gibbs advanced to the second round of last year’s Bank of the West Classic before falling to eventual champion Serena Williams.
Hantuchova, who was once ranked as high as No. 4 in the world, is an eight-time winner on the WTA Tour, including a victory this season at the AEGON Classic in June. Hantuchova has competed in the Bank of the West Classic in years prior, reaching the semifinals in 2007 and the quarterfinals in 2005 and 2009.
In other news, world No. 17 Sabine Lisicki has been forced to withdraw from the event due to a wrist injury. Lisicki made an impressive run at this year’s Wimbledon, advancing to the final before losing to Marion Bartoli.
Bartoli, along with fellow Wimbledon semifinalists Agnieszka Radwanska and Kirsten Flipkens, will face a Bank of the West Classic player field loaded with former Grand Slam champions. Those currently entered in the tournament include three-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova, 2011 US Open winner Samantha Stosur and 2010 French Open titlist Francesca Schiavone.
The Bank of the West Classic will also host several up-and-coming American stars who are already accepted into the main draw, including Madison Keys, Jamie Hampton and Varvara Lepchenko. In addition, fellow Americans Christina McHale and Mallory Burdette will play in the qualifying draw.
Tickets for the 2013 Bank of the West Classic, which will be held July 22-28 at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium on the campus of Stanford University, can be purchased by calling the box office at 866-WTA-TIXS (866-982-8497) or by logging on to www.mubadalasvc.com
In addition to individual-session tickets, the Bank of the West Classic is also offering several weekend packages starting at just $255.
Full-week packages start at just $595 and include tickets to all 13 sessions, a pass to the exclusive Plaza Club and an invitation to the Meet the Players Party. Those who purchase a pair of seats will also receive a weeklong VIP parking pass.
The Bank of the West Classic, a premier WTA event, features a 28-player singles draw as well as a 16-team doubles draw. The event is owned and operated by IMG and serves as the opening women's event of the Emirates Airline US Open Series.
The list of past champions of the event reads like a Who's Who of women's tennis, including Serena Williams, Lindsay Davenport, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Andrea Jaeger, Monica Seles, Martina Hingis, Venus Williams and Kim Clijsters.
The Bank of the West Classic offers several different seat options, with prices to fit everyone's budget, so reserve your seats today. Qualifying will be held July 20-21 and is free to the public.
ABOUT THE BANK OF THE WEST CLASSIC: The Bank of the West Classic is the longest-running women's-only professional tennis tournament in the world and is the first stop on the Emirates Airline US Open Series. Owned and operated by IMG, the WTA premier event features a 28-player singles draw and a 16-team doubles draw, with total prize money of $795,000. Held on Stanford University’s campus at Taube Family Tennis Stadium since 1997, former champions include Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Andrea Jaeger, Monica Seles, Martina Hingis, Lindsay Davenport, Serena Williams, Venus Williams and Kim Clijsters.
ABOUT BANK OF THE WEST:
Founded in 1874, $62 billion-asset Bank of the West (www.bankofthewest.com
), Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender, offers a full range of personal, commercial, wealth management and international banking services. The bank operates more than 600 retail and commercial banking locations in 19 western and midwestern states. Bank of the West is a subsidiary of BNP Paribas, which has a presence in 80 countries with nearly 200,000 employees.
IMG Worldwide is a global sports, entertainment and media business, with nearly 3,000 employees operating in 30 countries around the globe. IMG’s areas of expertise are diverse and wide ranging: IMG College; IMG’s Joint Ventures in China, Brazil and India; IMG Media; IMG Events and Federations; IMG Fashion; IMG Models; IMG Art+Commerce; IMG Clients; IMG Academies; IMG Consulting and IMG Licensing. More information is available at www.imgworld.com