NEW YORK, November 4 – The Outback Champions Series, the global tennis circuit for champion tennis players over the age of 30, will continue this week when the seventh of eight events on the 2008 schedule is held in Surprise, Ariz., at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America Tennis Championships at Surprise starting Wednesday at the Surprise Tennis and Racquet Complex. The field for the first-year event is highlighted by John McEnroe, who is competing in his first Outback Champions Series event since Newport, R.I., in August, and Jim Courier, currently the No. 1 ranked player in the Stanford Champions Rankings, used to determine the top player for the year on the Outback Champions Series.
McEnroe and Courier are both paired in the event’s round-robin Group B alongside fellow American Jimmy Arias and Anders Jarryd of Sweden. Todd Martin of the United States and Wayne Ferreira of South Africa headline Group A, along with Magnus Larsson of Sweden and Karel Novacek of the Czech Republic. Larsson is a replacement in the field for Mark Philippoussis of Australia, who still has not recovered from knee surgery from earlier this year, while Novacek is playing in place of Mikael Pernfors of Sweden, who is still recovering from an Achilles injury. The event runs through Sunday and will be contested on a hard court.
The Outback Champions Series features eight events on its 2008 schedule with each event featuring an eight-man round-robin match format. The winner of each four-player division meets in the title match while second place finishers in each division play in the third-place match. Each event features $150,000 in prize money with an undefeated winner taking home $54,000 as well as Champions Series ranking points that will determine the year-end Stanford Champions Rankings No. 1. Beginning in 2008, the year-end champion will receive a $100,000 bonus courtesy of Stanford Financial Group, the official rankings sponsor of the Outback Champions Series.
The 2008 Outback Champions Series kicked off March 12-16 in Naples, Fla., at The Oliver Group Champions Cup where Martin defeated McEnroe in the final. Courier won the second event of the season at The Residences at The Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman Legends Championships April 16-20, defeating Ferreira in the final, while McEnroe won his first career Outback Champions Series even in Boston April 30- May 4, defeating Aaron Krickstein in the final. Pat Cash won his first Outback Champions Series title in Newport, R.I., in August, defeating Courier in the final, while Courier won his second and third titles of the season in September in Charlotte and in October in Dallas, defeating Martin and Thomas Enqvist in the final, respectively. The final event in 2008 will be held in Dubai, U.A.E., Nov. 19-22.
Founded in 2005, the Outback Champions Series features some of the biggest names in tennis over the last 25 years, including Pete Sampras, McEnroe, Courier and many others. To be eligible to compete on the Outback Champions Series, players must have reached at least a major singles final, been ranked in the top five in the world or played singles on a championship Davis Cup team. Each event also has the right to choose a “wild card” entrant. More information on the Outback Champions Series can be obtained by visiting www.ChampionsSeriesTennis.com.
InsideOut Sports & Entertainment is a New York City-based independent producer of proprietary events and promotions founded in 2004 by former world No. 1 and Hall of Fame tennis player Jim Courier and former SFX and Clear Channel executive Jon Venison. In 2005, InsideOut launched its signature property, the Outback Champions Series, a collection of tennis events featuring the greatest names in tennis over the age of 30. In addition, InsideOut produces many other successful events including one-night “Legendary Night” exhibitions as well as charity events and tennis fantasy camps, including the annual Ultimate Fantasy Camp. For more information, please log on to www.InsideOutSE.com or www.ChampionsSeriesTennis.com