A brand new Women’s WTA Tournament is part of the Aegon Open Nottingham taking place in June which will attract some of the world’s top tennis players to the city.
The WTA event which appears straight after the Roland Garros French Open features British No.1 Heather Watson who will step out on court in a bid to win her third WTA Tour title.
Former world number 5 Daniela Hantuchova and 2013 Aegon Classic Birmingham winner will be joined by French Open champion Francesca Schiavone, Chinese No.1 and two-time Grand Slam doubles winner Shuai Peng and German former world No.15 Julia Goerges. Futures stars of the game Monica Puig, Lauren Davis and Ana Konjuh have all enjoyed success on the junior circuit and are making strides in the professional game.
The Men’s ATP 250 tournament takes place a week later (20-27June) ahead of the Wimbledon championships, returning to the city for the first time in seven years. Headliners announced to date include World no 12 Feliciano Lopez, Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga currently ranked number 13 in the world and British number 3 James Ward.
The tournaments set the backdrop for a summer of activities in Nottingham to inspire and encourage more people to play tennis. Greg Rusedski launched the Great British Tennis Weekend initiative in the Old Market Square last weekend, giving people of all age and abilities the chance to try the sport in a friendly and fun environment. It is the first of a number of weekends planned with clubs across the city offering free sessions.
Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said; “Nottingham has a long and proud history of tennis spanning back to the early 1970s. The Nottingham Tennis Centre which opened in 1990 by the Princess of Wales now has over 350,000 visits a year and coaches some of the top youngsters from the region. Twenty five years on we can be proud of our achievements; the tournaments offer a fantastic way to commemorate this special anniversary.”
He added, “Such top quality sporting fixtures get local people involved in sport, add to our global reputation as a city of sport and bring a raft of economic benefits to the city and local businesses.”
Nottingham Tennis Centre is recognised for its international grass court standards and many players who will compete this year have cited the quality of the courts.
With 39 courts including 11 indoors, nine grass and 19 hard courts, Nottingham Tennis Centre is the largest public tennis centre in the UK. The facilities can comfortably accommodate the requirements of both tournaments, beating competition from the Edgbaston Priory Club in Birmingham and Devonshire Park, Eastbourne, to provide the world’s top ranking players an excellent environment in which to train, compete and finalise their preparations for Wimbledon.
Former Davis Cup captain and Nottingham tournament director Paul Hutchins said: “The grass courts at the Nottingham Tennis Centre are some of the best in the UK and one of the main reasons why these events are being hosted there. Nottingham will probably be one of the few cities in the world to host two events over such a short period of time.”
Tickets for both tournaments are still available with prices ranging from £5 – £45.
A special £5 discount can be applied on women’s WTA tickets using the promotional code SERVE5 at checkout.
Tickets for the qualifying tournaments (Sat 6 & Sun 7 June / Sat 20 & Sun 21 June) will be sold at £5 for an adult and will be FREE for children attending with an adult. On Sunday 21 June, there will be some main draw ATP matches played on centre court. You can buy a £10 adult ticket to gain access to the centre court (children accompanied by an adult are still free).
For more information and to buy tickets please visit www.nottinghamcity.gov.uk/tennis
The confirmed women’s player entry list: