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Watch Christina McHale's Exclusive Tour Of New USTA Orlando Facility

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

ORLANDO, FL, USA – On-the-rise American Christina McHale took a break from her off-season preparations to take WTA fans on an exclusive tour of the new USTA National Campus in Orlando, set to open in early 2017.

“It’s just a really great environment to be in,” said McHale, who was in town for a practice session on the Team USA Player Development courts.

Dubbed “the new Home Of American Tennis,” the National Campus will serve as the home base of USTA’s Player Development and USTA’s Community Tennis divisions as well as host USTA Pro Circuit events. Formerly in New York at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, which hosts the US Open, the new Orlando facility is one of the largest tennis facilities in the world.

Check out the video above to follow McHale on a first look at the brand new facility!


Fast Facts About The USTA National Campus:
· With 64-plus acres and 100 lighted tennis courts, the National Campus is one of the largest tennis facilities in the world.
· The USTA National Campus will open January 2, 2017 with the first tournament scheduled for January 6th.
· The Campus will host over 80 tournaments and events in 2017 with approximately 30,000 participants.
· An expected 80,000-100,000 attendees will visit the Campus in 2017.
· The USTA’s Community Tennis and Player Development divisions will be headquartered at the National Campus. It will also be home to the national training center for USTA-certified officials.

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Halep Kicks Off Day 2 In NYC

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

WTA Insider | On the second day of the WTA Insider Live Blog, the top half of the draw begin their US Open campaigns, including Simona Halep and Serena Williams.

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Sania Mirza’s New Year’s Resolution: Taking Care Of Unfinished Business

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

Doubles World No.1 Sania Mirza is closing in on 90 weeks at the top of the rankings, but she’s still got unfinished business to take care of in 2017.

The Indian star ended the season as the world’s top doubles player for the second straight year, capping off a stellar run which saw her win three Grand Slams in a row, go on a 41-match winning streak and rack up an incredible 15 titles with four different partners.

But despite the impressive trophy haul, there’s still one title missing from her resume, and in 2017 Mirza intends to make things right on the red clay of Paris.

“In 2017, I would love to win a Grand Slam,” Mirza said, speaking at a promotional event in India. “If that [winning the French Open] does happen, it would be amazing. I won’t kill myself, if I don’t [win the French Open].

“It would be amazing for me to have three back-to-back years with at least one Grand Slam. So, that would be my goal really and everything else follows.”

Mirza came close to lifting the French Open doubles trophy in 2011 when she reached the final with then-partner Elena Vesnina, but six years down the road the World No.1 is heading to Paris in search of her first Coupe Simone-Mathieu and the Career Slam.

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Sevastova Surges Past Muguruza

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

NEW YORK, NY, USA – Anastasija Sevastova held her nerve to pull off the win of her life at the US Open, dispatching No.3 seed and reigning French Open champion Garbiñe Muguruza, 7-5, 6-4.

“It still hasn’t settled in,” she said in her post-match press conference. “I mean, I’m tired mentally and it’s late. Normally I go to sleep at this time.

“It feels great, but it’s still not like I won the tournament. It’s only second round.”

Sevastova was a rising star back in 2011, reaching the fourth round of the Australian Open at 20 years old. But injuries soon sapped the desire away from the young Latvian, who hung up her racquets two years later, and was off the tour for two years more.

“I was playing a little bit. I was doing some sparring. It was better, physically. I was still playing okay. That’s why I think I decided to try again to come back.

“But you never know. A lot of people are trying to come back, and sometimes it doesn’t work out. That’s why I wanted to start from the beginning, from the lowest level.”

Playing on the game’s biggest stage, Sevastova thrilled the Arthur Ashe crowd as she took the first set and raced out to a 5-1 lead in the second, holding two match points in the next game.

“I stopped thinking. I was thinking too much at 5-2, 5-3. Then I said, ‘Okay, I have one more chance at 5-4. She’s serving. I broke her before enough times, so I will try this one more time.’

“And still, even then it’s only 5-5. It’s still an open match like the first set.”

That positivity took the Latvian over the finish line, breaking serve to love to clinch the biggest upset thus far.

“I think it was a very tough match,” Muguruza said after the match. “I think I didn’t play well today. I think she also played well. Everything she was doing was working. Maybe at the last part of the match I could feel like I could have a chance to come back, but, in fact, it was like 50/50.

“So at the end she played well, and that’s it.”

Still, the Spaniard seemed to take the defeat in stride, joking about her less-than-stellar record at the US Open.

“I try to give my all. I try to fight on court. She was just better. I don’t know if it’s bad luck.

“But, well, I did my best result again! I’m just saying that.”

Up next for Sevastova is Kateryna Bondarenko, who won a dramatic 5-7, 7-6(5), 7-5 match over China’s Zheng Saisai earlier in the evening.

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Wozniacki Turns Back The Clock

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

NEW YORK, NY, USA – As Caroline Wozniacki hurtled to all corners of the court before unleashing an unerringly accurate winner to close out her upset win over Svetlana Kuznetsova on Wednesday afternoon, it felt as if someone had wound back the clock.

The manner of the comeback drew instant parallels with two displays from the Dane’s pomp against the same player at the same venue. The first of these, during the a fourth round tussle seven years ago, came from a particularly perilous position, Wozniacki trailing the Russian 6-2, 4-1 only to somehow resuscitate her ailing challenge.

“Definitely I was a much different player back then. I love playing here at the Open. I have great memories here,” Wozniacki said. “I have had matches against Sveta so many times before here where she’s been killing literally on court 6-1, 4-1, and then I have managed to come back and win the match in three sets.

“It’s like, You know what? Just keep going, wait for your opportunity and your chance, and I did that today.”

In both 2009 and 2011, Wozniacki went on to reach the latter stages of the tournament; indeed, in 2009 she would come within one win of that elusive Grand Slam title, only to be denied by Kim Clijsters own fairytale run.

Two years ago, Wozniacki returned to the final once more, this time losing out to the imperious Serena Williams. Since then success has been rather thin on the ground, injuries sending her ranking tumbling down to No.74. However, the former World No.1 is not contemplating hanging up the racquets just yet.

“I think, you know, when you’re home for a big amount of time you realize that, you know, life goes on and you kind of get a rhythm at home. I was actually enjoying my time, making the most of the time that I had,” Wozniacki said about her time away from the tour this spring recovering from an ankle injury.

“I haven’t been able to be home for three months in a row for the last probably over 10 years. So, you know, if I have to look at the positive of things, that was a positive. But I always had in my head that I just have to keep working hard and I’ll come back and hopefully play strong and play well. I knew that it’s not easy to come back, and especially, you know, you are going to get tough draws. I’m a player that needs matches to kind of get into the tournament.

“But I wasn’t thinking about quitting. I mean, I know that I have a lot of opportunities, I have a lot of other interests, and my life is going to be good regardless. But, you know, I’m still young. Hopefully I have a few more years in me.”

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Kerber, Serena Lead WTA Stars' Ivanovic Salute On Twitter

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

Former World No.1 and 2008 French Open champion Ana Ivanovic took the tennis world by surprise when she announced on Facebook Live that she would be retiring from the sport, effective immediately.

“It hasn’t been an overnight decision,” she explained in an exclusive with WTA Insider. “It’s been on my mind for a little bit but I tried to also follow my heart because for me, it’s proven to be the best way.

“I really felt now it’s time to just give back. Coming from Serbia, everything that I’ve been through in my life and my career, so far my parents and my brother with me, they made it all possible. I feel very fortunate and so I want to give back and maybe help others be as fortunate as I was.”

What followed was an outpouring of well wishes from her friends and colleagues who’ve been with her throughout her 13-year career. From WTA founder Billie Jean King, to 2016’s World No.1s Angelique Kerber and Serena Williams, to rising stars like Belinda Bencic and Daria Gavrilova, it was clear Ivanovic was as much beloved by her fellow players as the fans saying #ThankYouAna.

Check out what her fellow WTA stars had to say about the Serb on Twitter:

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Brisbane: Everything You Need To Know

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

KEY INFORMATION:
Tournament Level: Premier
Prize Money: $1,000,000
Draw Size: 30 main draw/32 qualifying
Main Draw Ceremony: Friday, December 30- 12 pm AEST
Qualifying Dates: Friday, December 30 – Sunday, January 1
First Day of Main Draw: Sunday, January 1
Singles Final: Saturday, January 7- 7 pm AEST
Doubles Final: Saturday, January 7- following singles

MUST-FOLLOW SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS:
@WTA
@WTA_Insider – WTA Insider, Senior Writer Courtney Nguyen
@BrisbaneTennis – official tournament handle

WHERE TO WATCH:
Click here to select your country and find broadcast details for the Brisbane International.

TOURNAMENT NOTES:
– There have been six different champions crowned at Brisbane since its first staging in 2009: Victoria Azarenka (2009, 2016), Kim Clijsters (2010), Petra Kvitova (2011), Kaia Kanepi (2012), Serena Williams (2013, 2014) and Maria Sharapova (2015).
– With defending champion Victoria Azarenka away from the completion after giving birth to a baby boy and with no former champions in the draw, a new champion will lift the Brisbane trophy this year.
– One to watch: Entering the tournament as a wildcard, Australian Ashleigh Barty returned to tennis in 2016 after a stint in cricket as an all-rounder for the Brisbane Heat. Her return has been highlighted by a quarterfinal run at Nottingham, and she’s also been granted a wildcard into the upcoming Australian Open.

PLAYER FIELD:
Click here for complete singles and doubles draws.

The Brisbane International serves as the only Premier event of the first week of the season and the field is packed with five of the Elite Eight from the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global. A finalist last year, Angelique Kerber leads the field along with Singapore champion Dominika Cibulkova, Karolina Pliskova, Garbiñe Muguruza, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Elina Svitolina, and Elena Vesnina.

Also in Brisbane is Roberta Vinci, who recently announced her intention to play through another season, as well as the Gold Coast’s own Samantha Stosur, Olympic Gold Medalist Monica Puig, China’s top-ranked player Zhang Shuai and Eugenie Bouchard.

WILDCARDS:
Ashleigh Barty (AUS), Donna Vekic (CRO)

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