INDIAN WELLS, Calif. It will be a “Who’s Who” of men’s and women’s professional tennis as the Pacific Life Open is set for March 7-20 at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
American stars Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, Jennifer Capriati, and World No. 1 Lindsay Davenport, will all be on hand, as well as World No. 1 and defending champion Roger Federer of Switzerland, 2005 Australian Open champion Marat Safin of Russia, and 2004 Wimbledon Champion Maria Sharapova, also of Russia.
Additionally, every one of the top 50 players in the ATP, including two-time Pacific Life Open men’s champion Lleyton Hewitt of Australia, are among the more than 100 scheduled to compete in the men’s field.
As an ATP Masters Series event, each of the top players in the ATP Entry System rankings will earn automatic entry into the 96-player Pacific Life Open main draw. Fan will also have an opportunity to watch tennis such as Carlos Moya of Spain; Guillermo Coria, David Nalbandian and Gaston Gaudio of Argentina, and Tim Henman of Great Britain.
On the women’s side, other top-20 players committing early to the event include such stars as Amelie Mauresmo of France; Svetlana Kuznetsova, Elena Dementieva and Nadia Petrova of Russia; Paola Suarez of Argentina; and Karolina Sprem of Croatia.
Also returning is 2002 Pacific Life Open Champion Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia.
“The Pacific Life Open showcases the top stars in the beautiful setting of the California desert,” said Charlie Pasarell, tournament director. “Fans will be treated to some truly spectacular matches again this year.”
In conjunction with the Pacific Life Open, an All-Star Exhibition to benefit UNICEF and other worldwide tsunami relief organizations will take place at 6 p.m. on Friday, March 11 at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
Top 10 players committed to the event include Federer, Safin, Roddick, Agassi, Moya, Coria, Gaudio and Nalbandian. Special fundraising activities will begin at 5 p.m. at the Village Stage before moving inside the stadium for the exhibition matches.
The 48-player women’s qualifying draw takes place Monday, March 7 and Tuesday, March 8, feeding 12 players into the main draw, which opens on Wednesday, March 9. Men’s qualifying begins on Wednesday, March 9 with 48 players vying for 12 spots in the main draw; first-round play begins on Friday, March 11. The wo-men’s final will be held on Super Saturday, March 19. The men’s championship will follow a best-of-five set format and be held on Sunday, March 20.
Ticket information for the tournament can be obtained by calling the tournament box office at (800) 999-1585 or on the Internet at www.Pacific LifeOpen.com.