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by Justin Cohen

Jacksonville to Host United States vs. Brazil Davis Cup First Round Tie in February 2013

The USTA and U.S. Davis Cup Captain Jim Courier announced that Jacksonville, Fla. has been selected as the site for the 2013 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas first-round match between the United States and Brazil, February 1-3. The matches will be played at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, which will have an expected capacity of approximately 13,000. “There is nothing like playing Davis Cup in your home country and Jacksonville will be a great venue when we host Brazil next year,” said Courier, who led the United States to the semifinals this year in his second season as U.S. Davis Cup Captain. “We were very happy to draw a home match. This could be a great opportunity for players like John (Isner), Sam (Querrey) and Ryan (Harrison) to experience a home court advantage for the first time in their Davis Cup careers.” This will be just the second home match as U.S. Davis Cup Captain for Florida native Courier. The U.S. played all three of its matches on the road this year posting wins over Roger Federer’s Swiss team and France before losing to Spain in the semifinals. The matchup with Brazil will be the first home tie for the U.S. since the 2011 quarterfinals in Austin, Texas, and just the third home tie for the U.S. since 2009. In that time, the U.S. team has played seven road matches–all on clay. The event is being organized, staged and promoted by the USTA. Tickets will go on sale to the general public in early December. For more information, fans can call the U.S. Davis Cup hotline at (888) 484-8782 or visit www.usta.com/daviscup.

US Davis Cup Captain Jim Courier

US Davis Cup Captain Jim Courier

World TeamTennis and Mylan Announce Three-Year Title Sponsor Agreement

Mylan, one of the world’s leading generics and specialty pharmaceutical companies, and World TeamTennis (WTT) today announced a three-year agreement whereby Mylan will serve as the title sponsor of WTT, which will be renamed Mylan World TeamTennis. Mylan CEO Heather Bresch commented, “Mylan chose to partner with WTT due to our organizations’ shared commitment to helping people around the world overcome barriers to access. For WTT, access means making sure everyone has the opportunity to participate on a team, preparing people-regardless of age, gender or race-to compete both in sports and in life. For Mylan, access is our purpose. We are working every day to set new standards in health care and provide the world’s 7 billion people access to high quality medicine-and breaking down barriers to access along the way.  For instance, we are working to make drugs more affordable, reach underserved geographies, address unmet medical needs, overcome inadequate infrastructure and help shape policy.” Mylan Executive Chairman Robert J. Coury said, “We are very excited to partner with WTT to educate more people about what Mylan and WTT are doing to support access. We believe that this collaboration will serve both to accelerate the individual efforts of our organizations and allow us to accomplish even more together on the many shared objectives we care passionately about.” Mylan will serve as the title sponsor of the WTT Pro League’s more than 50 matches per season through 2015 and aims to extend the reach of WTT to new markets outside of the U.S. “Mylan and WTT share the same ideal of access and opportunity for everyone,” said Ilana Kloss, WTT CEO/Commissioner. “We are excited to partner with a global company like Mylan, and we will work together to elevate our respective brands and create greater opportunities for access both in the U.S. and international markets.” Under the agreement, Mylan also will be the title sponsor of Mylan WTT Smash Hits through 2015. Smash Hits is the annual charity event co-hosted by Billie Jean King and Sir Elton John to raise funds for the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) and various local AIDS charities.  Mylan, which sponsored the event in 2012, is one of the world’s leading providers of affordable antiretroviral medicines used to treat HIV/AIDS and has a long history of taking an active role in the fight against this disease.

Prince Signs Multi-Year Deal to become Official Racquet Sponsor of PowerShares Series

Prince Global Sports, a leading tennis equipment and footwear company, announced recently that it has signed a multi-year deal to become the official racquet sponsor of the PowerShares Series. Formerly known as the Champions Series, the PowerShares Series will visit a total of 12 U.S. cities during its seven-week 2012 season. The first event was won over the weekend by Jim Courier in suburban Phoenix. The next event takes place this evening at the United Center in Chicago, followed by a stop on Thursday night at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Detroit. “Prince is excited to be partnering with the PowerShares Series as the Official Racket Sponsor,” said Peg Connor, Director of Sports Marketing for Prince Global Sports. “Our brand is synonymous with the heritage of developing champions of today and tomorrow, so this opportunity to work with some of tennis’ greatest legends was an easy decision. We look forward to enhancing the experience for tennis fans throughout the country.” “We are pleased to welcome Prince to the PowerShares Series family, “said Jon Venison, Founding Partner at InsideOut Sports + Entertainment. “The Prince name has long been associated with the champions of tennis so we feel it is the perfect brand fit. As the official racket, Prince will provide demo frames from their EXO3 series of rackets to all participants in the ‘Play with the Pros Experience’ held prior to each event in every market. The ‘Play with the Pros Experience’ gives amateur players the chance to play points with the four headlining champions.”

Djokovic, Bryan Brothers to Play in Necker Cup Pro-Am with Sir Richard Bronson in British Virgin Islands

World No. 2 and five-time Grand Slam Champion Novak Djokovic will compete in the 2012 Necker Cup, the world’s most exclusive Pro-Am, to be held on Sir Richard Bronson’s private island Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands from December 9-13. Event Manager Premier Tennis Travel has also announced that Djokovic will be joined by the world’s greatest doubles team the Bryan Brothers and Mark Philippoussis, among others. “To have Novak and so many other great players participating in the Necker Cup is very exciting,” said Trevor Short, President of Premier Tennis Travel. “They’re all great ambassadors for the game on and off the court.” Amateur players can book a spot in the Necker Cup Pro-Am by calling (001) 800-376-0975 or by visiting www.NeckerCup.com. “Everything is shaping up to be an unforgettable week on Necker Island,” said Michael Richards, Director of Tennis at Necker and Co-Founder of the Necker Cup. “With the current players and now with Novak signing we are confident others will follow. We are sure to have an incredible collection of current and former tennis legends playing in the first Necker Cup.” Each evening will end with a unique cocktail and dinner experience concluding with an “End of the World” awards dinner, party and auction on Dec. 12 at Rosewood Little Dix Bay where the Legends Tennis Camp participants will have a chance to meet with Sir Richard and mingle with the past and current tennis stars. One hundred percent of all donations from the auction will directly benefit the local BVI community, Virgin Unite, the National Tennis Foundation, Novak Djokovic Foundation and other ATP and WTA player charities. In addition to the tennis, Sir Richard will kick off a Virgin Unite Leadership Retreat where Necker Cup participants will get to learn from one of the world’s most successful business leaders, as well as other social, sports and business icons.

Report: WTA Championships news, Fish done playing until 2013

According to a recent Twitter post by New York Times journalist Christopher Clarey, the WTA Championships list of hosts for 2014 has been narrowed down to candidates from Asia, eastern Europe and Latin America. Clarey always sent out a recent tweet that said American Mardy Fish, who had a heart procedure earlier this year and has been sidelined since the US Open, does not plan to play again in 2012. He expects to return to competitive action on the ATP World Tour in January 2013.

Murray, Roddick, Isner Headline 2012 Miami Tennis Cup in Key Biscayne

Andy Murray, Andy Roddick and John Isner will headline the first annual Miami Tennis Cup, which will be held from November 30-December 2 at the Crandon Park Tennis Center in Key Biscayne, Fla. The format will be Round Robin “SUPER SIX”, double elimination. The Miami Tennis Cup will be bringing white back to tennis with the edition of the first white tennis court in the history of tennis. Former French Open Champion and past World No. 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, Nicolas Almagro and Alejandro Fallo will also take part in the three-day event. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.TicketMaster.com.

Heather Watson to Headline “Ladies Night” at Royal Albert Hall in London on December 6

New British No. 1 Heather Watson is set to headline “Ladies Night” at the Statoil Masters Tennis in an all-star mixed doubles match at the Royal Albert Hall in London. The match will place on Thursday, December 6. Watson, who became the first British woman to win an WTA Tour title in 24 years when she won last weekend’s Japan Open in Osaka, will partner with British tennis legend Tim Henman against Anne Keothavong and Mark Philippoussis. “I am so excited to have the chance to play at the Royal Albert Hall for the first time, particularly as it will be Ladies Night at the Statoil Masters Tennis, and Statoil are one of my personal sponsors,” said Watson. “I’ll be partnering Tim Henman in the mixed doubles whom I watched a lot as kid so I can’t wait to play.” Watson joins a line-up of stars at the traditional pre-Christmas event at the Royal Albert Hall which includes John McEnroe, Goran Ivanisevic, Pat Cash, Henri Leconte, Carlos Moya, Mats Wilander and Mansour Bahrami, as well as Henman and Philippoussis.

Radwanska Commits to 2013 ASB Classic in Auckland

World No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska has announced her intention to open her 2013 season by competing in the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand, which will be held from December 31, 2012-January 5, 2013. “Agnieszka started the year at No. 8 in the world and by June she’d won three more titles in Dubai, Miami and Brussels, reached the final of Wimbledon and jumped to No. 2 in the world. That’s a pretty impressive six months,” said Karl Budge, Tournament Director.

Stosur First Player to Commit to 2013 Family Circle Cup in Charleston

World No. 9 and 2011 US Open Champion Samantha Stosur today became the first player to commit to the 2013 WTA Family Circle Cup, which will be played from March 30-April 7 in Charleston, S.C. It will be the Australian’s seventh appearance in Charleston, having won the title in 2010 by defeating Russian Vera Zvonareva. “I’m excited to return to the Family Circle Cup again this year,” said Stosur. “It’s one of my favorite tournaments and whenever I get the chance to play in Charleston, I always look forward to it.”

10 and Under Tennis Conference to be held in Houston from November 8-9

The United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) 10 and Under Tennis Conference will take place at The Downtown Club at The Met in Houston, Texas from November 9-10. The conference is an opportunity to hear some of the industry’s leading experts speaks on 10 and Under Tennis. Featured speakers include Cindy Benzon, Craig Jones, Ajay Pant, Bill Phillips and Butch Staples with a special presentation by Cameron Campbell from the Positive Coaching Alliance. The conference will have sessions on player competencies, managing large groups, setting up Play Days and other programs, incorporating 10 and Under Tennis into clubs’ yearly programs and the bottom-line benefits.  Registration for the conference is $75 and includes all materials. To reserve your spot for the conference, click the 10 and Under Tennis Conference ad on uspta.com. For more information, contact the education department at education@uspta.com or call (713) 978-7782, EXT. 128.

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About Justin Cohen
Justin Cohen is a graduate of Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida, with a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Specialization in Journalism and was a member of the varsity tennis team, where he and his teammates finished as the runner-up at the 2006 NCAA Division II Men’s Tennis Championships. Justin began writing his weekly column, “This Week in Tennis Business with Justin Cohen” in July 2009. The following month, he covered the ATP/WTA Western & Southern Financial Group Masters and Women’s Open in Cincinnati, Ohio interviewing most of the top ranked players in the world. A lifelong tennis enthusiast who has enjoyed traveling to many professional tennis tournaments, Justin has much experience in the tennis industry. Previously, he worked at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association in Princeton, New Jersey, and also completed summer internships in ticket sales at the ATP/WTA Tour Western & Southern Financial Group Masters and Women’s Open in Cincinnati and in marketing at the Tennis Channel in Los Angeles.

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