WHITE PLAINS, April 6, 2016
The USTA announced on Wednesday the tournaments for the 2016 USTA Pro Circuit Roland Garros Wild Card Challenge, which utilizes the USTA Pro Circuit to award wild cards into the French Open. Three women’s events will be hosted in Dothan, Ala., Charlottesville, Va., and Indian Harbour Beach, Fla., and three men’s events will take place in Sarasota, Fla., Savannah, Ga., and Tallahassee, Fla. The challenge kicks off next week in Sarasota for the men and the week of Monday, April 18, in Dothan for the women.
In the USTA Pro Circuit Roland Garros Wild Card Challenge, the American man and American woman who earn the most ATP World Tour and WTA Tour ranking points at two of the three select USTA Pro Circuit clay-court events earn main-draw wild cards into the French Open. Only Americans who did not otherwise earn direct entry into the French Open are eligible. The USTA and the French Tennis Federation have a reciprocal agreement in which wild cards into the 2016 French Open and US Open are exchanged.
This is the fifth consecutive year that the USTA has used this format to award French Open wild cards for American players.
The USTA Pro Circuit Roland Garros Wild Card Challenge will consist of the following events:
USTA Pro Circuit Men’s Events
- 2016 Joey Gratton Sarasota Open, $100,000 Sarasota, Fla. (week of April 11)
- St. Joseph’s/Candler Savannah Challenger, $50,000 Savannah, Ga. (week of April 18)
- USTA Tallahassee Tennis Challenger, $50,000 Tallahassee, Fla. (week of April 25)
USTA Pro Circuit Women’s Events
- Hardee’s Pro Classic, $50,000 Dothan, Ala. (week of April 18)
- Boyd Tinsley Women’s Clay Court Classic, $50,000 Charlottesville, Va. (week of April 25)
- Revolution Technologies Pro Tennis Classic, $75,000 Indian Harbour Beach, Fla. (week ofMay 2)
The USTA first used the wild card challenge format for its 2012 French Open wild cards, won by Melanie Oudin and Brian Baker. Oudin and Baker each advanced to the second round at that year’s French Open and subsequently broke into the Top 100. In 2013, Alex Kuznetsov andShelby Rogers earned the wild cards, with Rogers winning her first-ever Grand Slam singles match at the French Open. In 2014, young American Taylor Townsend and veteran Robby Gineprireceived the wild cards, with Townsend becoming a top storyline by reaching the Roland Garros third round. Last year, young Americans Frances Tiafoe and Louisa Chirico secured the wild cards.
The 2016 French Open main draw will be held Sunday, May 22, to Sunday, June 5.