NEW HAVEN, Conn. – World No. 4 and two-time defending champion Caroline Wozniacki and a trio of Americans -- Melanie Oudin, Sam Querrey and Mardy Fish -- headline the fields for Pilot Pen Tennis at Yale, an Olympus US Open Series event on the ATP World Tour and Sony Ericsson WTA Tour, to be held August 20-28 at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale, it was announced by Anne Worcester, tournament director.
Fans interested in seeing some of the stars listed above can take advantage of another great ticket deal just for the next week (July 14-21). Tickets to the Tuesday evening session on August 24 will be “buy one, get one free,” for a savings of $24. Fans can purchase online or over the phone, and need to include the special offer code, BOGOPPT10. Earlier this summer, more than 5,000 tickets were sold for the special $1 ticket Monday night session, so fans will want to take advantage of the Tuesday night offer before tickets are gone.
Last year, the 20-year old Wozniacki began her run to a second straight Pilot Pen title at the Tuesday evening session of the tournament. She is a fan favorite in New Haven after winning the title the last two years, reaching the finals of the US Open last summer and climbing to as high as No. 2 in the world. This season, she won the seventh title of her young career at Ponte Vedra Beach and also reached the finals at Indian Wells, semifinals at Charleston and quarterfinals of the French Open.
Another player who had an extremely successful US Open last year was Melanie Oudin. The then-relatively unknown 18-year old became the Cinderella story of the Open with her stunning run to the quarterfinals, upsetting the likes of Maria Sharapova and Elena Dementieva in tough three-set matches. Currently the third-ranked American woman at world No. 40, she has played well this season, reaching the semifinals at Paris and the quarterfinals at Memphis, Ponte Vedra Beach and Charleston.
Oudin’s American male compatriots are extremely familiar to fans in Connecticut. Sam Querrey, currently 23 years old and ranked No. 19 in the world, has had a strong start to the 2010 season, winning three titles at Memphis, Belgrade and London. In 2009, Querrey had the best season of his young career, highlighted by a strong summer hardcourt season that included a victory in Los Angeles and finals appearances at Newport, Indianapolis and the Pilot Pen, where he also captured the 2009 Olympus US Open Series title.
American veteran Mardy Fish (World No. 49) is a two-time finalist and fan favorite at the Pilot Pen. He was beset by injuries last summer, but has rebounded nicely and just last week won the fifth title of his career at Newport. By winning that title, he now has career wins on all surfaces (indoor carpet, indoor hardcourt, outdoor hardcourt, clay and grass), a rarity in today’s game.
A host of international stars who have won on Tour this year, veterans and rising stars round out both player fields. On the women’s side, French Open champion Francesca Schiavone (world No. 8), Flavia Pennetta (world No. 12), Yanina Wickmayer (world No. 17), Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez (world No. 22), Alisa Kleybanova (world No. 26), Alexandra Dulgheru (world No. 28), Alona Bondarenko (world No. 30), and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (world No. 31) have all won titles this year.
On the men’s side Thomaz Bellucci (world No. 22), Marcos Baghdatis (world No. 24), Richard Gasquet (world No. 47), Sergiy Stakhovsky (world No. 48), and Juan Ignacio Chela (world No. 54) have also added titles.
Veterans like Marion Bartoli (world No. 14) and Daniela Hantuchova (world No. 25), will be making their sixth and ninth appearances in New Haven, and rising stars Petra Kvitova (world No. 29) and Tsvetana Pironkova (world No. 35), who both reached the semifinals at Wimbledon just a few weeks ago, add to the depth of the tournament.
“While there are still eight wild cards left to name over the next five weeks, the 2010 Pilot Pen player fields are off to a strong start, contrasting rising stars, like Caroline Wozniacki, Melanie Oudin and Sam Querrey, with the exciting resurgence of veterans, such as Mardy Fish and Francesca Schiavone,” said Worcester. “Pilot Pen Tennis fans are once again guaranteed to see phenomenal players at the top of their game in an intimate atmosphere - and for exceptional value through our new ‘buy one, get one free’ ticket offer.”
The full fields for the Pilot Pen are set, with the exception of wildcards, which can be awarded up until August 19, and qualifier spots. The tournament has four men’s and women’s main-draw wildcards to distribute, and there are four spots in both main draws for advancing qualifiers.
For tickets, how to become a volunteer or more information about the tournament, please call the Pilot Pen Tennis Box Office, 888/99-PILOT, 203/776-7331, or log on to www.pilotpentennis.com
About Pilot Pen Tennis at Yale
Pilot Pen Tennis at Yale, an Olympus US Open Series event on the ATP World Tour and Sony Ericsson WTA Tour, will be held August 20-28, 2010, at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale and feature a number of international tennis stars. The 2009 Pilot Pen, whose champions are Caroline Wozniacki and Fernando Verdasco, drew nearly 80,000 spectators and was televised nationally for 16 hours on ESPN2 and CBS Sports. An economic impact study conducted in 2008 showed that the event generated an estimated total gross economic impact on the New Haven regional economy of more than $26 million.
About the Olympus US Open Series
The Olympus US Open Series brings together the 10 summer tournaments in North America, three television networks, tennis’ sanctioning bodies and top corporate sponsors during the summer tennis season. In 2009, the Series continued its enhancements to the sport, including more national TV hours, live back-to-back finals every weekend, bonus prize money at the US Open and a significant national marketing campaign.