June 15, 2011 - World TeamTennis (WTT) - Washington Kastles
Washington, DC Mayor Vincent Gray, World TeamTennis Co-Founder Billie Jean King and WTT Commissioner Ilana Kloss were among the supporters who ushered in a new era of Kastles' tennis on Tuesday at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Kastles Stadium at The Wharf.
Also participating in the ceremony were Kastles' owner Mark Ein and PN Hoffman CEO Monty Hoffman, who worked together in the Kastles' transition from the City Center to the Southwest Waterfront.
"What a magnificent venue this is," said Mayor Gray. "I couldn't wait to see what it would look like on the waterfront... Having it down here will make it accessible to lots of people. The important thing is to use this as a catalyst to get tennis infused all across the city, especially east of the [Potomac] River where we have so many kids."
With the snap of an oversized pair of scissors, King officially opened the Kastles' waterfront stadium, which this summer will play host to the Kastles' own Grand Slam champions Venus & Serena Williams, Leander Paes and Rennae Stubbs.
"What I love about Washington, DC is the teamwork; you are the epitome of teamwork," said King. "The fans in Washington, DC are the greatest. It's a melting pot; it's an international city; I love it. Every time I come here, I say, 'This is the way the world should look every single day.'"
As a cool breeze blew off the banks of the Potomac River, fourth-grade students from Amidon-Bowen Elementary School enjoyed a tennis clinic on a customized QuickStart court featuring WTT colors.
In the coming weeks, the professional WTT court will be installed in anticipation of the Kastles' July 5 season-opener against the Kansas City Explorers, which will feature Venus Williams and air live on the Tennis Channel and Comcast SportsNet.
Ein reiterated that the Kastles' ultimate goal remains to win the WTT Championship. Though the Kastles' home has changed, the owner stressed that the team's core values have never waivered since the team was founded in 2008:
- Bring the people of Washington together
- Create a center of high-quality, fun activities in the middle of DC
- Expose the sport of tennis to a wider audience
- Help local charitable partners
"Our hope as we move from City Center to this beautiful location on the waterfront is that when people talk about this stadium, they say, 'Kastles Stadium at The Wharf is where people come together,'" said Ein.
They're Back! Venus and Serena win Comeback Matches
Venus and Serena Williams made winning returns to the WTA Tour this week on the grass courts of Eastbourne, England.
Venus reached the quarterfinals at the AEGON International by defeating former world No. 1 Ana Ivanovic 6-3, 6-2 on Wednesday.
"Right now, I feel that I'm playing very tough and I'm playing well on the big points," Venus said. "These matches have been huge and crucial for me to just get back in the swing of things."
In the first round on Monday, Venus overcame a patch of rusty play in her first match since the 2011 Australian Open to beat current world No. 11 Andrea Petkovic 7-5, 5-7, 6-3.
"It was definitely an adventure: the conditions, falling down every other point," Venus said. "Coming back from such a long lay-off and competing against someone who has been playing so well the last 12 months, there was a lot going on out there, but I was extremely excited to come back with a win."
Serena fell just short of joining her sister in the Eastbourne quarterfinals, losing to Vera Zvonareva 3-6, 7-6(5), 7-5 on Wednesday in a rematch of the 2010 Wimbledon final.
Zvonareva led 5-2 in the third set, before Serena saved three match points to even the score at 5-5. But the top-seeded Russian broke to take a 6-5 lead and finally served out the match on her third attempt.
"Serena has done an unbelievable job coming back after almost a year of not playing," Zvonareva said. "She spent more than three hours on the court today playing some unbelievable tennis. She's a great champion and I have a lot of respect for her."
In Serena's first match since winning Wimbledon last season, she defeated 2010 Wimbledon semifinalist Tsvetana Pironkova 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the Eastbourne first round on Tuesday.
"The first set was over really fast. I was just a little anxious and missing a tremendous amount of shots," Serena said. "I was more anxious than nervous. Anxious is when you really want it so much, and nervous is when you're a little afraid. I wasn't afraid; I just really wanted it."
Don't forget that the Williams sisters are scheduled to play for the Kastles in DC immediately after Wimbledon. Venus will be in town for the historic home opener at Kastles Stadium at The Wharf on July 5th, with Serena due to arrive two nights later for a marquee match against the Boston Lobsters.
If you haven't secured your seats already, don't hesitate any longer! Purchase your tickets today at Ticketmaster.com.
In other Kastles' news, Leander Paes reached his fourth doubles final of the season with Mahesh Bhupathi last weekend.
The 'Indian Express' defeated French Open champions Max Mirnyi and Daniel Nestor 6-7(7), 7-6(6), [10-8] in the Queen's Club semifinals. World No. 1s Bob and Mike Bryan needed three more tiebreaks to knock off Paes and Bhupathi in the championship match 6-7(2), 7-6(4), [10-6].
"It was a hard fought match against a great team," said Bob Bryan. "You have to play your best against the Indians. These two guys are legends and one of the greatest teams of all time."
Be sure to like the Kastles on Facebook and Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates on how your hometown tennis team is performing on the road to Wimbledon.
Only 13 of 147 Premium Season Boxes Remain for 2011!
With a new waterfront venue, a renewal rate of almost 100 %, and the return of Venus and Serena Williams to pro tennis, tickets for the 2011 Washington Kastles season are almost gone. When tickets went on sale, 147 premium season boxes were available. As of June 14th, only 13 remained:
0 of 18 VIP Dream Tables
1 of 14 VIP Owner's Club Tables
4 of 75 Premier Courtside Boxes
8 of 40 Kastles' Box Seats
For the most memorable Kastles experience, the VIP Owner's Club provides fans with full dinner service and unlimited drinks served at your table!
These four-seat dinner tables are located just above the Owner's Box along the north baseline, presenting great views of the exciting action on the court and around the stadium.
With the purchase of a VIP Owner's Club table, you will receive a comprehensive package of VIP benefits including:
Open bar and catered dinner served at your tableAccess to exclusive Kastles social events such as the Season Kickoff Player Party, VIP post-match parties each night, and other great events throughout the yearSeason-ticket holder clinic with Coach Murphy Jensen at Kastles Stadium at The WharfEntry for each of your guests to the SunTrust Club, a pre-match VIP Hospitality Tent with food sampling each night and where the pre-match press conferences are heldA VIP parking pass
VIP Owner's Club dinner tables are the perfect setting for enjoying great summer nights with family, friends, clients and colleagues.
Only one VIP Owner's Club table remains, so act now! The VIP Owner's Club table has four seats to all seven Kastles home matches, and costs $5,000.
For fans seeking seats on the court, VIP Premier Courtside Boxes offer front-row tickets on the North, West and East sides of Kastles Stadium at The Wharf. Waiters let you purchase food and beverages in your box so that you will never have to leave your seat and get in a concession line.
VIP Premier Courtside Box holders enjoy all the other VIP perks that fans sitting in dream tables receive, including access to the SunTrust Club before each match.
The cost for each VIP Premier Courtside Box, which provides four seats per box to all seven Kastles home matches, is $3,000. Only four VIP Premier Courtside Boxes are still available.
Kastles' Box Seats are now located along the North baseline, featuring spectacular scenic views of the Potomac River and surrounding areas. Once fans see these views, these boxes will become perennial favorites.
Four seats to all seven Kastles home matches are included in each box, along with access to exclusive Kastles social events and the season-ticket holder clinic with Coach Jensen. Just eight Kastles' Boxes are left. They cost $1,800 each.
Remaining boxes and dinner tables are very limited, and will sell out as they do each season. So don't wait to secure your seats to the hottest ticket of the summer.
Call Brittany Vanderpool at 202-654-7080 to order boxes and dinner tables, or for more information.
The 2011 Kastles Season is July 5-21, and tickets are going fast.
Secure your group tickets, season tickets, boxes and dinner tables before it's too late!
2011 HOME SCHEDULE
Tuesday, July 5
Kansas City Explorers
Thursday, July 7
Tuesday, July 12
New York Sportimes
Thursday, July 14
Friday, July 15
St. Louis Aces
Fan Reception and Exhibition with Chris Evert
Monday, July 18
USTA, Family and Champions Night
Thursday, July 21