WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – American John Isner – champion of the 2011 and 2012 Winston-Salem Opens – is the first player committed to the 2017 tournament. Joining Isner at the Winston-Salem Open will be Andy Roddick, James Blake, Mardy Fish and Michael Chang who will compete as part of the PowerShares Series.
“We’re very excited John is returning to Winston-Salem to compete again next summer. We also want to wish John a Happy Birthday today (April 26),” tournament director Bill Oakes said. “John is always a crowd favorite since he’s a local guy and holds a special place in history as the champion of the first Winston-Salem Open. John’s early commitment to this summer’s tournament gets us off to a great start as we assemble another top-notch field of players.”
The 31-year-old Greensboro native and University of Georgia alum won the first two Winston-Salem Opens and also participated in 2014. He beat Julien Benneteau in the finals to win the inaugural Winston-Salem Open, and then rallied for a thrilling third-set tie-break victory over Tomas Berdych in the 2012 finals, fighting off two championship points.
The 6-feet, 10-inch Isner was the top-ranked American player for more than three years and reached as high as No. 9 in 2012. He currently checks in at No. 24 in the latest ATP World Tour rankings. Isner owns 10 ATP World Tour singles titles, most recently in Atlanta in 2015. He has won Atlanta three times, plus the Winston-Salem Open, Auckland and Newport twice each.
“In addition to the excitement of having John back, we’ve adjusted playing times for this year’s finals. Like last year, there will be sessions Monday through Thursday at 3 and 7 p.m. However, the doubles final has moved to Friday at 4 p.m. followed by the singles semifinals at 7 p.m.,” he said. “The singles championship will be the only match on the final day of the tournament on Saturday, August 26 at 5 p.m. We believe these scheduling adjustments will better accommodate our fans’ schedules and remove us from the sometimes oppressive noon sun and heat for the championship on Saturday.”
The PowerShares Series is returning to the Wake Forest Tennis Complex for the second year in a row. Roddick, Blake, Fish and Chang will play competitively on Day Two of the tournament at 7 p.m. on Sunday, August 20. Each PowerShares event features two one-set semifinal matches and a one-set championship match. Winston-Salem is one of 12 cities that will host an event on the PowerShares circuit this year.
Included with the matches will be small group clinics and behind-the-scenes opportunities to meet the players. More information, including ticket prices, availability and group information will be released at a later date on WinstonSalemOpen.com.
“The PowerShares evening will feature some of the best tennis during our tournament. Last year’s PowerShares competition was nothing short of phenomenal, and the crowd loved it,” Oakes said. “Getting the chance to watch and meet guys like these four legends is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Make no doubt about, they’re legends, but they still take the competition very seriously.”