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Norcross gets Tennis Championships

NORCROSS — The Atlanta Tennis Championships announced Tuesday that the 2011 professional tournament will be held at the Racquet Club of the South in Norcross.

The event, scheduled for July 18-24, made its debut this past summer at the Atlanta Athletic Club, but a new site was necessary with the AAC hosting the 2011 PGA Championship golf tournament. The ATC tourney will occupy the same spot in the ATP World Tour calendar, once again serving as the launch for the Olympus U.S. Open Series.

Tennis

What: Atlanta Tennis Championships

When: July 18-24

Where: Racquet Club of the South

Last year’s singles champion, Mardy Fish, and finalist John Isner have both committed to play in next year’s tourney. Both finished this season in the ATP World Tour’s top 20.

“We’re extremely pleased to bring the Atlanta Tennis Championships to the Racquet Club of the South,” tournament chairman Rex Maynard said. “The club’s extensive experience in hosting professional tournaments over many years makes it a very desirable location to showcase the top players in the world.”

The Norcross venue is considered one of Georgia’s top tennis clubs, hosting such tourneys as the 1990 Federation Cup and a men’s world championship tournament during the 1980s. It has been a regular host to USTA Pro Circuit tournaments over the years and also serves as a USTA Regional Training Center. It also is the home club of rising U.S. women’s star Melanie Oudin.

Racquet Club of the South features a permanent outdoor stadium in addition to 26 outdoor courts, eight indoor courts and two platform courts.

“With one very successful year under our belts, we are aiming to improve our customer‘s experience,” tournament director Bill Oakes said. “We know our new host will provide our partners, spectators and players with spacious and comfortable indoor facilities along with an attractive outdoor area with numerous courts. Some people think we were in Atlanta for just one year, but nothing could be further from the truth. We are here for the long haul.”

The Atlanta Tennis Championships will feature a field and schedule similar to the 2010 version, with a 28-player singles draw and a 16-team doubles draw. Four of the singles spots will come from a two-day qualifying tournament July 16-17.