Wild Card Challenge Starts At Kiwi Tennis Today
By Space Coast Daily // April 19, 2013
April 28 – May 5 at Kiwi Tennis Club
Annual USTA Pro Circuit Event Showcases Rising Women Athletes with $50,000 Purse
BREVARD COUNTY • INDIALANTIC, FLORIDA – The prequalifying Wild Card Challenge at the Audi Melbourne Pro Tennis Classic began today at Kiwi Tennis Club in Indian Harbour Beach.
The event is free to the public and match play begins today at 12 noon.
Twenty-one players from around the world will compete for two days to determine two players that will earn a Wild Card into the Qualifying Draw of the 2013 tournament.
The $50,000 Audi Pro Tennis Classic, a Pro Circuit Event, is under way April 28 – May 5 at Kiwi Tennis Club.
The field for the Audi Melbourne Pro Tennis Classic will feature 32 singles players in the Qualifying Draw, 32 singles players in Main Draw and 16 Main Draw doubles teams. Wild Card qualifying took place April 18 – 19, with qualifying beginning Sunday April, 28, 2013.
“We’re excited to welcome the athletes to Brevard County for another thrilling year of tennis,” says Holly Baney, Tournament Director.
“Players ranked in the top 100 in the world come to compete and once again, we could be the tournament that is the deciding factor for the Main Draw Wild Card at the French Open,” adds Baney.
EAGER, TALENTED FIELD
Top Seed Sherry Li of the USA, and Second Seed Jainy Scheepens of the Netherlands led an eager and talented field of up-and-coming women’s tennis players aiming for a chance at a $50,000 purse and the title of Champion of the 2013 Audi Melbourne Pro Tennis Classic.
Jainy Scheepens holds local ties to the area, as she is the niece of Brenda Schultz-McCarthy, who is one of the first players to receive a Main Draw wild card from the Audi Melbourne Pro Tennis Classic. Schultz’ career high came in 1996 when she was ranked Number 9 in the world, after playing in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon and the US Open the year before. Longstanding injuries caused her to retire in 1999, but she came out of retirement and returned to tennis in 2005.
Her resurgence in 2006 led Schultz-McCarthy to claim her place in tennis history away from Venus Williams as the fastest server in WTA history, recording a 130 mph serve in the first round of the Western & Southern Financial Group Women’s Open qualifying tournament in Cincinnati, Ohio. Williams would however tie the record in 2008.
Several local high school players and Kiwi Tennis Club members also competed today in the wild card challenge with Vicky Bensimon, a senior at Cocoa Beach High School, and Courtenay Copeland, Edgewood High School, advancing to Friday’s competition.
For more information call 321-698-0888 or log on to KiwiProTennis.com