Sixteen-year olds Anna Kalinskya of Russia and Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic will join other aspiring professionals in this month’s Jose Cuervo Women’s Open, a $25,000 USTA Pro Circuit Women’s Tennis Tournament, at Innisbrook Resort in Palm Harbor.
The teenagers played to the final in last month’s Innisbrook Wildcard Tournament to qualify for the main draw of the March 22-29 Pro Circuit contest.
In addition to the eight days of women’s professional competition, Innisbrook has scheduled a variety of community events, including a Pro-Am, a USTA Pros and 2014 USTA League 4.5 National Women’s Champions Challenge, complimentary High School Team and Pro Circuit Players Challenge and a 10-and-under Play Day.
“The Pro Circuit event definitely brings world-class tennis to our local community for eight action-packed days giving us a peek at the stars of tomorrow,” said Pam Collins, director of Innisbrook’s tennis and recreation. “It brings the local community together for the USTA events scheduled throughout the week and provides opportunities for all ages and levels.
“I can’t count the number of times first-time spectators tell me how amazed they are at the quality of play and that they experience a whole different perspective up close — they didn’t know what they had been missing.”
This year’s early entry lists show players ranked as high as No. 127 among those competing. Visit www.procircuit.usta.com or call (727) 942-5241.
Victors Crowned, Charity Dollars Raised at Tournament of Champions
The Suncoast Tennis Foundation hosted its 13th Tournament of Champions last month to name the top charity doubles teams of 2014 and to raise money for the foundation, a volunteer-run 501©c3 community tennis association.
In all, about 150 players competed among five NTRP divisions of mixed and women’s doubles and three men’s.
Over $12,000 was raised — more than a $3,000 increase from last year — over the weekend play from raffle drawings, Silent Auction, sponsorships and entry fees. Proceeds will be directed toward the STF’s mission of growing and supporting amateur tennis, particularly among the youth.
“The Suncoast Tennis Foundation is very pleased with this increase from last year,” said Judy Foster, executive director of the STF. “Our board will be meeting next month to discuss how we can best put this money back into the community to continue growing and promoting tennis.”