FORMER WINNERS BRYAN BROTHERS, HAAS LEAD ATP CHAMPIONS TOUR FIELD IN DELRAY BEACH

FORMER WINNERS BRYAN BROTHERS, HAAS LEAD ATP CHAMPIONS TOUR FIELD IN DELRAY BEACH

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                DECEMBER 17, 2020

 

CONTACT: Pete Holtermann

Email: pholtermann@yellowtennisball.com

 

FORMER WINNERS BRYAN BROTHERS, HAAS LEAD
ATP CHAMPIONS TOUR FIELD IN DELRAY BEACH
Bryans & Jensens Captains for Twelfth Annual Legends Event to be Held Jan. 4-6

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. – Six-time Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com doubles champions Bob and Mike Bryan will be joined by former singles winner Tommy Haas in the field for the tournament’s ATP Champions Tour event that will be held Jan. 4-6, at the Delray Beach Stadium & Tennis Center.

The Bryans retired last summer after playing their final ATP Tour event at the Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com in February where they claimed the tournament title for the second year in a row. The California twins will captain Team Bryans in their ATP Champions Tour debut. They will face Team Jensens, which will be captained by brothers Luke and Murphy Jensen. The teams of Grand Slam winning siblings will square off in the final match of the Champions Tour event in Delray Beach.

“We’re excited to get back to Delray Beach,” said Bob Bryan. “We have enjoyed playing there over the years and look forward to starting this next chapter of our career where we had a successful finish to our touring days.”

Mike Bryan added, “It will be a lot of fun to be back on the court, but I’m especially looking forward to playing the Jensens. I’m sure they’ll be fired up to play us, but hopefully being some of the youngest guys on the ATP Champions Tour will be to our advantage!”

Team Bryans will also feature Wayne Ferreira, Johan Kriek, Mark Merklein and Mikael Pernfors.

“I have no idea why the ATP Champions Tour is having the Jensen Brothers, who have never officially retired, play against a couple of retired dudes,” said Luke Jensen. “I am absolutely out of my mind pumped to get back on the court with the greatest doubles team to ever lace them up. The Bryans made old doubles dogs like us very proud in the way they moved the game forward. But I’m hoping they have forgotten how to play tennis since their retirement!”

Alongside Luke and Murphy, Team Jensens includes 2006 Delray Beach Open singles champion Tommy Haas and Jesse Levine.

There will be six matches contested over four sessions as part of the ATP Champions Tour event. The schedule, which is subject to change, is as follows:
Session 1 – Monday, Jan. 4,
6 pm:
Johan Kriek & Mark Merklein vs. Luke & Murphy Jensen
Not before 8 pm: Bob & Mike Bryan vs. Tommy Haas & Jesse Levine

Session 2 – Tuesday, Jan. 5
10 am: ATP 250 Qualifying (3 matches)
Not Before 2:30 pm:
Wayne Ferreira & Mikael Pernfors vs. Tommy Haas & Jesse Levine

Session 3 – Tuesday, Jan. 5,
6 pm:
Wayne Ferreira & Mikael Pernfors vs. Luke & Murphy Jensen

Session 4 – Wednesday, Jan. 6
11 am: ATP 250 Qualifying final round match
Not Before 12:30 pm:
Wayne Ferreira vs. Tommy Haas
Not Before 2:30 pm: Bob & Mike Bryan vs. Luke & Murphy Jensen

“The ATP Champions Tour is a great way to kick off our event week while we welcome back some very familiar faces to Delray Beach,” said Tournament Director Mark Baron. “One of the unique aspects of the tournament is the opportunity to see generational battles like the Bryans playing the Jensens. We look forward to that and all the matches over the course of the event.”

The Bryans make their ATP Champions Tour debut at the site of their final ATP Tour match. The California twins announced their retirement in August after claiming their second straight and sixth overall Delray Beach Open title in February. The 10-time year-end No. 1 team on the ATP, they won a record 119 titles together. Mike is two minutes older than Bob.

The Jensens won four titles together including at the French Open in 1993. That season, the Michigan natives finished as the No. 5 duo on the ATP Tour. The best of their eight appearances at this tournament came with a run to the 1997 final when the event was held in Coral Springs. Luke is two years older than Murphy.

During their ATP careers, the sets of brothers only faced each other one time, with the Bryans prevailing 7-6(7), 6-3 in the 2002 Cincinnati first round.

Ferreira won 15 singles and 11 doubles titles during his career while finishing in the singles Top 10 in back-to-back seasons. He was the first Olympic medalist from South Africa in 32 years when he won the silver in doubles at the 1992 Barcelona Games. He is making his third ATP Champions Tour appearance in Delray Beach.

Haas was the 2006 singles champion in Delray Beach. After nine appearances in the ATP 250 tournament, he will be playing the ATP Champions Tour event for the third time, having been a member of the winning team in each of the past two years. A 15-time winner on the ATP Tour, Haas was ranked as high as No. 2 during his career.

Kriek is making his fourth ATP Champions Tour stop in Delray Beach. The winner of 14 career singles titles, he was a two-time Australian Open winner. He reached a career high ranking of No. 7. Kriek was also a winner eight times in doubles during his ATP career.

Levine is now a local resident, serving as Tennis Director at Boca Bridges. A four-time participant in the Delray Beach ATP event, he will be playing his fourth straight ATP Champions Tour tournament here. The Canadian won five Challenger titles during his career.

Merklein was a two-time national champion at the University of Florida, winning the doubles title in 1993 before claiming singles in 1994. The Coral Springs native was a four-time state high school singles champion for St. Thomas. He reached the doubles quarterfinals for his native Bahamas at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. In 1998, he reached the doubles final at Delray Beach, the best of his eight appearances here.

Pernfors returns for his sixth ATP Champions Tour appearance in Delray Beach. The winner of back-to-back NCAA singles titles, he also helped the University of Georgia to the 1985 team title. As a pro, he won three titles and reached the finals at the French Open while achieving a career high ranking of No. 10.

Originally scheduled for February, the 2021 Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com will feature ATP Champions Tour matches running concurrently with ATP 250 qualifying matches on Jan. 5-6. The main draw for the ATP 250 tournament, which will feature 28 players in singles and 16 teams in doubles, will begin Thursday, Jan. 7 with two sessions each day until the finals are contested during a single session on Wednesday, Jan. 13.

All tickets for the “Physically Distanced, Forever Social” event at the historic downtown tennis center are on sale now at www.yellowtennisball.com or by phone at +1 561-330-6000. In order to accommodate spacious conditions in the stadium and throughout the venue, attendance for each session at the 2021 tournament will be capped at 2,000 people, just under 25 percent of the outdoor stadium’s total capacity.

Fans who act quickly can take advantage of a special Holiday Sale on tickets if purchasing before midnight on Dec. 31. Using the promo code CHAMPION, a discount of 30% will be applied to individual box and reserved seats for Sessions 1-4 (ATP Champions Tour matches). For discounted tickets to see the ATP 250 matches, fans can use the code JINGLE to get 10% off individual box seats for Sessions 5-14, while the code BELLS will provide a 20% discount on individual reserved seats for Sessions 5-14.

Last year, Delray Beach resident Reilly Opelka served a tournament record 99 aces during the week in which he won his second career ATP Tour title while the Bryans repeated as doubles champions. In the opening weekend’s ATP Champions Tour matches, Team Europe, led by Haas and David Ferrer, earned a 5-2 win over the James Blake-led Team World.

The entry lists for ATP 250 singles and doubles as well as qualifying will be released the week of Dec. 21.

In an ever-changing world the tournament will maintain the highest level of health and safety standards for fans, players and staff alike. Please remain updated on our measures at https://yellowtennisball.com/faq/

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Disclaimer – Match schedule, including number of sessions, dates, times, number of matches and players scheduled are subject to change. Tickets are not eligible for refund or exchange.

About The Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com: The only tournament in the world featuring an ATP Champions Tour event and an ATP Tour event in the same week at the same venue will be held in Delray Beach, Florida, January 4-13, 2021, at the Delray Beach Stadium & Tennis Center. The ATP Tour’s first North American hard court event of the outdoor season is one of just 10 ATP Tour events in the United States. 2021 will be its 23rd year in Delray Beach, and 29th overall. The three-day, ATP Champions Tour team-event is in its 12th year and was the first-ever ATP Champions Tour event played on US soil. Each year the Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com brings world-class tennis players and thousands of visitors to Delray Beach and Palm Beach County. In 2010, the tournament received the Providencia Award from Discover The Palm Beaches Florida for its extraordinary contribution to tourism. The City of Delray Beach was also a finalist for the USTA’s “Best Tennis Town” Award and in 2003, the tournament was the recipient of an “ATP Award of Excellence.” For more information please visit www.YellowTennisBall.com.

About The ATP: The ATP is the governing body of the men’s professional tennis circuits — the ATP Tour, the ATP Challenger Tour and the ATP Champions Tour. With 64 tournaments in 30 countries, the ATP Tour showcases the finest male athletes competing in the world’s most exciting venues. From Australia to Europe and the Americas to Asia, the stars of the 2020 ATP Tour will battle for prestigious titles and FedEx ATP Rankings points at ATP Masters 1000, 500 and 250 events, as well as Grand Slams (non-ATP events). The 2020 season launched in January with the inaugural ATP Cup in Australia and will culminate with only the world’s top 8 qualified singles players and doubles teams competing for the last title of the season at the Nitto ATP Finals in November. Held at The O2 in London, the event will officially crown the 2020 ATP World No. 1. For more information, please visit www.ATPTour.com.

About the ATP Champions Tour: The ATP Champions Tour brings together many of the greatest tennis players in history for nostalgic, competitive and entertaining tournaments around the world. Players are either formerly ranked No. 1 in the world in singles, a Grand Slam singles champion or finalist, or a singles player on a winning Davis Cup team. Players must be retired from ATP Tour competition and each event can invite wild card entrants of its choice. The Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com features a 3-day team-format.

About The City of Delray Beach: In the southeast corner of Palm Beach County on the Atlantic seashore, a Village by the Sea that began as an agricultural community in 1895 has become one of Florida’s most popular destinations for visitors, new families and seasonal residents. The City of Delray Beach encompasses slightly over 16 square miles with a permanent population of nearly 65,000 and growing. The City’s charm continues to garner national awards, including three in 2017: an “All-America City” award from the National Civic League for literacy strides (the city was also recognized in 1993 and 2001), a “Playful City USA” designation for providing 24 playgrounds for residents, and the recognition of Atlantic Ave as one of the “10 Great American Shopping Streets” by USA Today. In 2012 during the nationally televised “Best of the Road” special, Delray Beach was chosen by Rand McNally, USA Today and the Travel Channel as the “Most Fun Small Town” in America. In 2014, USA Today named it as one of the “Best Atlantic Beaches in Florida.”

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