Top Talent in Qualifying During Opening Weekend

National / International Media: Pete Holtermann, 312.218.3442,
Cincinnati and regional media: Jackie Reau, 513.929.4263,
Tournament contact: Will Sikes, 513.651.0303,
Main Draw Players Expected to Practice Alongside 
Qualifying Matches Opening Weekend, August 10-11 
CINCINNATI (July 23, 2013) --- A fast and furious opening weekend will jumpstart the 2013 Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio.
Qualifying for both the women's and men's tournaments will take place on Saturday and Sunday, August 10-11, with a total of 76 players vying over two matches for one of 19 spots in the main draw (12 women, 7 men).
For those players, who are ranked from No. 31 to No. 87 on their respective tours, including 15 who are ranked in the Top 50, the chance to play in a one of the five combined ATP Masters 1000 and WTA Premier events in the world puts quite a bit on the line during qualifying.
For spectators, it's a busy day with all 16 courts in action. These tension filled qualifying matches take place on eight courts at the same time many main draw players are practicing on the remaining courts, offering two spectacles for one great price over this popular opening weekend. 
"The qualifying tournament is always exciting because these players are working very hard for a breakthrough," said tournament director Vince Cicero. "There is arguably as much on the line in qualifying as there is in the early rounds of the main draw. To be able to see that while also watching main draw players practice makes our opening weekend a tremendous value for fans."
The women's qualifying field is headlined by a former Grand Slam winner - the 2010 French Open champion Francesca Schiavone. There are also five players who have reached the semifinals of a major in the field: Kimiko Date-KrummDaniela HantuchovaTsvetana Pironkova, Yanina Wickmayerand Zheng Jie.
Date-Krumm, Hantuchova, Schivone and Germany's Andrea Petkovic, who is on the comeback trail after being injured, have all spent time ranked in the Top 10 in their career.
More than a half-dozen teenage rising stars will also participate in the women's qualifying draw. American Madison Keys (18) headlines a group that includes Great Britain's Laura Robson (19), Puerto Rico's Monica Puig (19), Canada's Eugenie Bouchard (19), France's Caroline Garcia (19), Germany's Annica Beck (19) and Croatia's Donna Vekic (17).
The men's qualifying field is headlined by Lukasz Kubot, who just two weeks ago reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. Michael Llodra, a two-time doubles Grand Slam champion and the 2011 doubles runner-up in Cincinnati, is also in the field.
Two veterans with recent wins on Tour will also play qualifying. Thirty-one year-old Nicolas Mahut, who was on the losing end of the marathon 70-68 fifth set against John Isner at Wimbledon in 2010, has claimed his first career ATP titles, winning twice in the past five weeks. He's joined in the qualifying field by 34-year-old Ivo Karlovic, who won last week in Bogota without having his serve broken just weeks after being hospitalized for viral meningitis.
Six additional women and four men will be added to these qualifying fields with wild cards. The qualifying draws and first round schedule will be announced on the evening of August 9. 
Tickets for qualifying start as low as $5 and are available Saturday is AdvancePierre Foods Kids Day, and Sunday's day session will not only include the final round of qualifying but also the start of the first round of the men's tournament main draw. The first night session of the Western & Southern Open will feature more men's main draw action on Sunday, and is Kroger Family Night with $8 off any adult ticket and half price tickets for children.
The Western & Southern Open hosted 176,000 fans last year, recording a record 10 sellouts over the 16 total sessions spanning nine days. The event drew fans from all 50 states and 19 countries. Cincinnati is one of the last stops on the Emirates Airline US Open Series leading up to the US Open, and often critical points and bonus money are on the line adding drama to the week.
About the Western Southern Open
The Western & Southern Open will be held August 10-18, 2013 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center, 20 miles north of Cincinnati in Mason, OH. It is the nation's oldest professional tennis tournament still held in its original city. The tournament is one of the prestigious ATP Masters 1000 events on the men's tour and a Premier 5 event for the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) - making it one of only five events in the world outside of the grand slams with events of that caliber occurring during the same week at the same venue. A recent study conducted by the University of Cincinnati concluded that the event generated $62.5 million in economic impact. The event is seen by more than 60 million people in 170 countries worldwide and is broadcast domestically on Tennis Channel, ESPN2 and CBS. The tournament is also one of the last stops on the Emirates Airline US Open Series prior to the US Open in New York. Since 1974, the tournament has contributed more than $8.7 million to beneficiaries Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Barrett Cancer Center and Tennis for City Youth.