Ohio’s Tennis in the Land Event Has Future Secured
The Tennis in the Land event has been a great success in Cleveland, Ohio, since being launched in 2021. Now the future of this women’s tennis tournament has been secured after the signing of a multi-year deal between the Rock Entertainment (REG) and Tennis in the Land.
Speaking about the deal, Nic Barlage (the CEO of REG) commented: “Over the past two years, Tennis in the Land has flourished to become a much-anticipated week-long annual event for Northeast Ohio.”
2022 saw 32 singles players and 16 doubles teams compete in the week-long tournament in Cleveland between August 21 and 27. Held at the Jacobs Pavilion, the tournament was won by Liudmila Samsonova who beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the final.
The title triumph for Samsonova was not entirely unexpected. The Russian player was unseeded but had won a tournament held in Washington just three weeks before the Tennis in the Land event.
Samsonova was in dominant form all week and lost only 18 games in her five matches without dropping a set. The only seeded player she faced all week was in the final with her opponent being the seventh of eight seeds. The week also saw Emma Raducanu beat both Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka before losing to Jessica Pegula.
Over 30,000 fans attended the event that had been launched in 2021. On that occasion it was Anett Kontaveit who won the title but she didn’t defend it 12 months later.
The tournament isn’t just important for the players who are tuning up for the US Open. It’s estimated that around $4 million was earned for the city during the tournament.
David Gilbert is the President and CEO of Greater Cleveland Sports. He has spoken about the importance of the tournament: “Tennis in the Land, the annual Women’s Tennis Association 250 event, will continue to bring the most elite women’s tennis players to Cleveland adding to the marketability of our community as a sports town.”
According to the Ohio sports betting portal, Ohio is certainly the place to be for tennis fans in August. Earlier in the month, Cincinnati plays host to the Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio and is in the northern suburbs of Cincinnati.
This event sees both a men’s and women’s tournament being held and is at the 1000 level (making it a Masters event for the male players) which is the highest outside of the end-of-season finals and the four Grand Slam events.
Previous winners of the men’s tournament illustrate just why the focus of the tennis world is on Ohio in August. Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, Daniil Medvedev and the recently retired Roger Federer are all former champions.
2022 was a big surprise though with the unseeded Borna Coric becoming champion. He was ranked 152nd in the world but got into the main draw due to a protected ranking after being injured. He became the lowest ranked player to win a Masters event. He’ll have his work cut to successfully defend that title in 2023.
The womens’ event also provided a surprise winner. Caroline Garcia from France became the first qualifier to win a WTA 1000 event with a win over Petra Kvitova in the final. Will we see more surprises when big time tennis returns to Ohio?
Read >> World’s best tennis magazine