ATHENS, May 11, 2016 – University of Georgia tennis team member, Austin Smith, a Cumming, Ga. native, was awarded a main draw singles wildcard into the 2016 BB&T Atlanta Open, by tournament director, Eddie Gonzalez.
"It's a BB&T Atlanta Open tradition to extend one of our main draw singles wildcards to a deserving player from one of our major universities,” said Gonzalez. “Austin Smith is a leader on and off the court and is another in a long line of Bulldog tennis players from metro Atlanta that will be competing for an NCAA title in the coming weeks.”
Smith played No. 1 singles and doubles all season long for the Bulldogs, and established himself as one of the top players in the league throughout the 2015-16 campaign. He not only led the SEC in dual-match wins with 19, but is the active career leader in singles wins in the SEC with 127 victories.
“I had not idea,” smiled Smith. “I'm just excited to have the opportunity to play in this event. With guys like (John) Isner and big (names) playing in this event, it's a thrill to play in a tournament like the BB&T (Atlanta Open).
About BB&T Atlanta Open College Night:
When: Tuesday, August 2, 2016
Where: Atlantic Station, Atlanta, GA
Who: UGA's Austin Smith will play a main draw singles match that evening
Tickets: Special “Buy One Get One” Free (day of event) for all college students. While supplies last. (BOGO only available for purchase at on-site ticket office). Also when buying tickets, fans can use a special code, UGABBTAO, at checkout that gives them 20% discount for Tuesday.
"College Night, Tuesday, August 2, is part of the fabric of BB&T Atlanta Open week,” stated Gonzalez. “With the popularity of college sports in the Metro Atlanta area and around the state of Georgia, it's always a fun to watch a local college star play one of the best players in the world. We always have "College Night" themed specials and a few surprises thrown in for fans."
“I want to potentially make a career out of playing tennis and this a great start,” added Smith. “Some of the people in Atlanta don't get to watch me all that often. I don't get to play that often in Atlanta, so this is a chance to go out and make them proud.”
Tickets for the 2016 BB&T Atlanta Open can be purchased at http://www.bbtatlantaopen.com/
About the BB&T Atlanta Open
The BB&T Atlanta Open is held each year in July in Atlantic Station and is one of eight summer tournaments in the Emirates Airline US Open Series. The tournament features men’s top world tennis players in singles and doubles competition. Approximately 40,000 fans attend the tournament and bring an estimated economic impact of $10.3 million to Atlanta. John Isner holds the 2015, 2014 and the 2013 titles. Andy Roddick won his last ATP World Tour title when he defeated Gilles Muller at the 2012 BB&T Atlanta Open. Mardy Fish holds the title for 2011 and 2010.
About GF Sports
After the successful completion of the BB&T Atlanta Open in August 2015, GF Sports, LLC, a newly formed integrated event content company, formed by the New York-based financial management company GF Capital Private Equity Fund, and its founder Gary Fuhrman, along with long time sports executive, Jerry Solomon and his Lynnfield-based company, StarGames acquired the tournament. GF Sports has committed to reinvigorating the BB&T Atlanta Open brand and bringing a World Class Field-World Class Fun to many local, regional and national tennis fans for years to come.
About the Emirates Airline US Open Series
Now in its 12th season, the Emirates Airline US Open Series continues to serve as a true regular season of hard court tennis, linking eight summer tournaments to the US Open. In 2014, Serena Williams won the US Open and Emirates Airline US Open Series women’s title for the second consecutive year, earning a record tennis paycheck of $4 million. Rafael Nadal (2013), Roger Federer (2007) and Kim Clijsters (2005) also accomplished the feat of winning the Emirates Airline US Open Series and US Open singles title within the same year. www.emiratesusopenseries.com.