Venus Williams & the Freedoms downed by Capitals;
Venus Raises $1,700 for Abington Health
King of Prussia, Pa. (July 8, 2009) – Less than a week after playing in the Wimbledon final and winning the Women’s Doubles title with her sister, seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams made her sole home appearance for the Freedoms in front of a packed house in Freedoms Stadium. Though the Freedoms lost the match 18-15 to the visiting Sacramento Capitals, it was a productive night which saw Venus and WTT co-founder Billie Jean King on-court for special halftime presentations.
The Freedoms got off to a slow start, with Nathan Healey falling to the Capitals’ Sam Warburg 5-1 in men’s singles. Venus Williams made her first on-court appearance of the night in women’s singles but was upset by 2006 WTT Female M.V.P Angela Haynes 5-1.
With the Freedoms trailing 10-2 in the overall match score, Venus and Healey bounced right back in the third set, teaming together in mixed doubles to defeat Coco Vandeweghe and Mark Knowles of the Capitals 5-2. Venus continued her hot play, teaming with world no.7 doubles player Lisa Raymond to defeat Haynes and Vandeweghe 5-1 in women’s doubles. The match concluded with men’s doubles, won by the Capitals’ Knowles and Warburg, who ended the Freedoms night by defeating Healey and Eric Nunez 5-3.
At halftime of tonight’s match, WTT co-founder Billie Jean King presented Kayla Cyr, 20, of Westminster, Md., and Heather Welch, 20, of Columbia, S.C., with the 2009 National Novo Nordisk Donnelly Award. Cyr and Welch, who both have Type I Diabetes, will each receive a $5,000 scholarship to be used for education, tennis development and/or medical care. Randall Haylock, 18, of Lindenhurst, Ill., and Jillian Tallarico, 21, of Lancaster, Pa., will also receive regional finalist scholarship awards of $2,500. The Novo Nordisk Donnelly Awards annually award $15,000 in scholarships including two one-time $5,000 scholarships given to two young people, ages 12-21, who have diabetes and play tennis competitively in tournaments or on their school team.
Additionally, Venus Williams participated in a live auction at halftime benefitting Abington Health, the official host sponsor and charitable partner of the Philadelphia Freedoms. Venus auctioned off one of her Freedoms jersey, raising $1,700 for Abington Health.
The Freedoms next home match is this Friday, July 10, when Andre Agassi makes his highly anticipated return to competitive tennis playing for the Freedoms. Though Friday’s match is sold-out, tickets still remain for the only Philadelphia appearance of 2009 Wimbledon Champion Serena Williams on Monday, July 13 (playing for the visiting Washington Kastles). The very next night, Tuesday, July 14, tennis legend and renowned commentator John McEnroe and the New York Sportimes visit Freedoms Stadium. Tickets can be purchased by calling 866-WTT-TIXS or visiting philadelphiafreedoms.com.
Advanta World TeamTennis Pro League - Results for Wednesday, 7/8
(Home teams in capital letters)
Sacramento Capitals def. PHILADELPHIA FREEDOMS 18-15
Men’s Singles – Sam Warburg (Capitals) def. Nathan Healey (Freedoms) 5-1
Women’s Singles – Angela Haynes (Capitals) def. Venus Williams (Freedoms) 5-1
Mixed Doubles – Venus Williams\Nathan Healey (Freedoms) def. Coco Vandeweghe\Mark Knowles (Capitals) 5-2
Women’s Doubles – Lisa Raymond\Venus Williams (Freedoms) def. Angela Haynes\Coco Vandeweghe (Capitals) 5-1
Men’s Doubles – Mark Knowles\Sam Warburg (Capitals) def. Nathan Healey\Eric Nunez (Freedoms) 5-3
Photo Credit: costellophotography.com