The 10th Annual Wismilak International will be held in Bali September 6-14 pitting some of the world's top women tennis stars in competition for a generous prize purse.
Among the top female tennis talent expected to participate are 8th-ranked Chanda Rubin, 14th-ranked Conchita Martinez, 17th-ranked Elena Dementieva, 42nd-ranked Ashley Harkleroad, 47th-ranked Emilie Loit, 48th-ranked Yoon Jeong Cho, 29th-ranked Cara Black, 50th-ranked Dinara Safina and 75th-ranked Mary Pierce. Also slated to appear is Indonesia's home-town favorite, Angelique Widjaja, currently ranked 76th in the Women's Tennis Association(WTA).
According to Kevin Livesey, the Director of the Wismilak International WTA Tour 2003, most of the world-ranked players originating from the USA, Europe, South Africa and Asia will depart directly from New York City for Bali after competing in the U.S. Open being held there from August 25 – September 7. The next stop on the tour after Bali will be Shanghai, China for the Polo Shanghai Open, scheduled for September 15-21, 2003.
Fierce Competition Expected
Tennis observers are predicting a fierce match up of talent between Chanda Rubin (USA), Conchita Martinez (Spain) and Elena Dementieva (Russia) – each currently playing at the top of their game and seeking use their Bali appearance to climb the rankings on the international tour.
Bali is Back
Ronald Walla, spokesman for PT Gelora Djaya the main sponsor of Wismilak International 2003 said he hoped the tournament would help repopularize Bali via the spectacle of top quality international tennis competition. "Looking at the acceptance list, we can see that the outside world is prepared to visit Bali again ... we must use this momentum to restore Bali's image in the tourism sector following the tragedy of last year, SARS and the effects of the Gulf war," he said.
Bali's 5-star Grand Hyatt is the tournament venue with the matches being played on the hotel's premises.
Tournament packages for those wishing to watch the matches are available via the tournament's website.
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