Philadelphia Freedoms DRAFT melanie oudin and
Each Will Appear at Freedoms’ Home Matches in July 2011
February 15, 2011 (PHILADELPHIA, Pa.) – The Philadelphia Freedoms selected U.S. teen tennis star Melanie Oudin with their first pick in the 2011 World TeamTennis Marquee Player Draft this afternoon. The Freedoms also announced that they will host tennis stars John McEnroe, Venus Williams, and the Bryan Brothers (Bob and Mike) during the 2011 season of the WTT Pro League presented by GEICO. Each will appear at Freedoms’ home matches in July 2011. The Freedoms will play seven home matches at The Pavilion at Villanova University; match dates to be announced.
Oudin, 19, is a newcomer to the WTT Pro League. Oudin burst onto the tennis scene when she defeated former No. 1 Jelena Jankovic in 2009 at Wimbledon en route to making her first 4th round appearance at a Grand Slam. The win not only marked her first victory over a Top 10 player but also her debut into the WTA’s Top 100. At the 2009 US Open, Oudin had come from behind wins over Elena Dementieva, Maria Sharapova and Nadia Petrova, making her the youngest American Grand Slam quarterfinalist since Serena Williams at the 1999 US Open. Oudin has experience in international team play, competing on the US Fed Cup team over the past year.
Now in her 8th season with World TeamTennis, former Freedoms player Venus Williams returns to Villanova with her Washington Kastles’ teammates. Williams, a 7-time Grand Slam singles and 12-time Grand Slam doubles champion, has won 43 WTA singles titles and 18 doubles titles. The former world No. 1 in both singles and doubles also has three Gold medals from the 2000 and 2008 Olympic Games.
Bob and Mike Bryan are returning to the lineup for the 2010 WTT Champion Kansas City Explorers for their 7th consecutive season with the Explorers, and 9th overall in the League. The Bryan Brothers, currently ranked No. 1 in the world, recently won their 10th Grand Slam doubles title together at the Australian Open, extending their record-setting ATP World Tour win count to 68.
Team rosters will be completed on Tuesday, March 15, when the 2011 WTT Roster Player Draft is conducted. With WTT’s gender-balanced team concept, each team is comprised of two men, two women and a coach. Team matches consist of five events, with one set each of men's singles, women's singles, men's doubles, women's doubles and mixed doubles.
Season tickets are available starting today for the 2011 WTT season. Season ticketholders enjoy the benefits of tickets to each of the seven Philadelphia Freedoms home games, reserved parking and a separate, private entrance into the Pavilion at Villanova University. More information about season tickets is available online at www.philadelphiafreedoms.com or by phone at (212) 586-3444.
About Philadelphia Freedoms:
World TeamTennis (WTT) was co-founded by tennis legend Billie Jean King who is also owner of the Philadelphia Freedoms. The Freedoms play seven nights of matches each year during the month of July at The Pavilion at Villanova University. All events feature world-class tennis in an innovative, fast-paced World TeamTennis coed team format. Each evening includes exciting Block Parties featuring USTA Quick Start Tennis, live music, inflatables, mascots, kids’ games, prizes, food and much more.
The 2011 Freedoms Sponsors include Beneficial Bank, Abington Health, Acura, GEICO, Fidelity Investments King of Prussia, Novo Nordisk, CBS3/The CW Philly, The Inquirer, Hamlin Family Foundation, Macy’s, USTA Middle States, 23K Studios, g2 Communications, Chipotle, Drexel University Sports Management, Energy Plus, Dolce Valley Forge, 950 ESPN/WPEN-AM, 97.5WNUW-FM, 102.9WMGK-FM, McShane Sports Medicine and Excel Physical Therapy.
Visit www.philadelphiafreedoms.com for more information.
About Beneficial Bank
Founded in 1853, Beneficial Bank is the oldest and largest bank headquartered in Philadelphia. It is a community-based, full-service financial services company that has served individuals and businesses in the Delaware Valley for 158 years. With 65 offices in the greater Philadelphia and South Jersey regions and $4.7 billion in assets, Beneficial offers a full array of financial products that includes commercial, consumer and real estate lending, insurance and wealth management. Visit www.thebeneficial.com for more information.
About WTT Pro League presented by GEICO:
The World Team Tennis (WTT) Pro League presented by GEICO showcases the best in professional team tennis with the innovative coed team format co-founded by Billie Jean King in the 1970s. The WTT Pro League has featured virtually every major champion of the Open era over the League's past 35 seasons.
Official WTT Pro League sponsors for the 2011 season include Acura, DecoTurf, GEICO, Solfire and Wilson Racquet Sports. The United States Tennis Association (USTA) is a minority owner and promotional partner of World TeamTennis.
For more information on the WTT Pro League, visit www.WTT.com.
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