Andre Agassi Forced to Withdraw; Kayla Harrison, Gail Devers, Brooke Bennett, Kent Steffes, Gigi Fernandez and Nancy Kerrigan all to Attend
ATLANTA, July 15, 2016 – Seventeen-time Grand Slam Singles and Doubles Champion and U.S. Davis Cup Team player/captain, John McEnroe, will return to Atlanta to participate in the 2016 BB&T Atlanta Open’s Celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. McEnroe replaces an injured Andre Agassi to play on Sunday, July 31, at Atlantic Station at 7:30 PM.
McEnroe’s addition to the star-studded line-up of Olympic medalists scheduled to attend the BB&T Atlanta Open, part of the Emirates Airline U.S. Open Series, reinforces the anticipation and excitement for a week of appearances by past and current champions, including Harrison ( Judo Gold Medal), Kerrigan (Figure Skating Silver and Bronze), Fernandez (Tennis Gold), Steffes (Beach Volleyball Gold), Bennett (Swimming Gold) and Devers (Track and Field Gold). All are scheduled to be featured at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games 20th Anniversary Exhibit presented by Coca-Cola. The exhibit is free and open to the public and coincides with the BB&T Atlanta Open's celebration of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, which runs July 30 – August 7.
Agassi, who won the Gold Medal at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics informed tournament officials this week that he made a major decision to withdraw from tennis events for the foreseeable future due to recurring back problems.
"In order to avoid further injury, I have decided there is a need to step back and take a break from competitive tennis," stated Agassi. "It’s been a great run and I will always cherish the memories of playing in Atlanta and at the 1996 Olympic Games. I know John will put on a great show for the fans in my absence."
“I look forward to coming to Atlanta and to be a part of the BB&T Atlanta Open playing against Sergi Bruguera on Sunday night, July 31,” stated McEnroe, who holds a 41-8 Davis Cup record in singles and 18-2 mark in doubles. “Atlanta has always been a great tennis city, and I have heard that Atlantic Station in midtown Atlanta is a great place for the event.”
The 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games 20th Anniversary Exhibit presented by Coca-Cola will be open 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. each day and is located next to the Atlantic Station Publix. Appearances will be Harrison (July 30,31), Kerrigan (Aug 1), Fernandez (Aug 2), Steffes (Aug 3), Bennett (Aug 4) and Devers (Aug 5).
Tickets on sale now at www.bbtatlantaopen.com or by calling the ticket hotlines at 855 307-1981 or 404-941-9202.
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 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 ATP
The ATP is the governing body of the men's professional tennis circuits - the ATP World Tour, the ATP Challenger Tour and the ATP Champions Tour. With 60 tournaments in 30 countries, the ATP World 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 2015 ATP World Tour battle for prestigious titles and Emirates ATP Rankings points at ATP World Tour Masters 1000, 500 and 250 events, as well as Grand Slams (non ATP events). At the end of the season only the world’s best eight qualified singles players and doubles teams will compete for the last title of the season at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. Held at The O2 in London, the event will officially crown the 2015 ATP World Tour No.1 presented by Emirates. For more information, please visit www.ATPWorldTour.com.
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.
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