The Oracle Pro Series hopes to pave the way for more great American players like Serena Williams.
TCU will host an ATP event this October. Courtesy of College Tennis Online
SMU has also got a WTA women's tournament on the docket. Courtesy of SMU
If you’re tennis obsessed like me, you track and attend all of the professional tournaments that pop up in Texas. There are a few throughout the year, like the RBC Tennis Championships of Dallas and Men’s Clay Court Championships in Houston. But Texas is seriously lacking when it comes to the women’s tours.
Now, a brand new professional tournament series is coming to Dallas-Fort Worth, and it’s not just exciting for spectators, but the U.S. professional tennis scene as well. The Oracle Pro Series will debut this October in Los Angeles, and will hold tournaments in Waco, Dallas and Fort Worth.
The Waco tournament will take place at Baylor University on October 13 through 20, and will be a combined men’s and women’s tournament. On October 20 through 27, Texas Christian University will host an ATP men’s tournament. And on that same weekend, Southern Methodist University will host the WTA women’s tournament.
The Pro Series will overall schedule more than 25 new ATP, WTA, and ITF World Tennis Tour pro tournaments from 2019 to 2020. It’ll create more than 40 percent new playing opportunities in the United States for professionals. Prize money ranges from $25,000 to $108,000 per a tournament. Thankfully, the combined tournaments in California, Texas and Florida this fall will offer equal prize money of $25,000.
“At Oracle, we’re looking at this holistically,” says Oracle CEO Mark Hurd. “We want more exposure for tennis at all levels in the United States. All of our efforts, from awards to tournament series to collegiate sponsorships and strategic partnerships, are pieces of an overall plan to raise the quality of American tennis.”
For college players, this should help transition aspiring professionals up to the ATP and WTA Tours.
“The Oracle Pro Series will reward success with immediate access to higher level tournaments by connecting all Oracle events into one merit-based path to the highest levels of international professional tennis,” a release notes.
American tennis Hall of Famer Jim Courier’s company InsideOut Sports & Entertainment is partnering with the series.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Oracle to give up-and-coming players more opportunities to compete for prize money, improve their rankings and launch their careers,” Courier says. “Together, we will play a big part influencing the future of tennis in the U.S.”
Definitely something to look forward to for American and Texas tennis.