Koser Jeweler Tennis Challenge Set to Start

Singles Champion Paula Kania (left), and Finalist Ons Jabeur (right).
2014 Singles Champion Paula Kania (left), and Finalist Ons Jabeur (right).

When it comes to timing, no tournament does it better than the Koser Jeweler Tennis Challenge, a USTA Pro Circuit event.

The event, taking place next week in Landisville, Pa., is just weeks before the US Open. That makes it a popular stop for high-level players looking to hone their games before the biggest event of the year.

This year, that’s even more obvious than ever. The only women’s pro circuit event to take place in Pennsylvania, this event is bringing in women from all over the world to compete in front of the local fans.

One of the most recognizable players it has attracted is Vicky Duval, who is coming back after a 14-month leave from competition. Duval was one of the game’s biggest up-and-comers a few years ago when she was ranked in the top 90 in the world, and shocked tennis fans with an upset win against Samantha Stosur in the first round of the 2013 US Open.

Duval was forced to take a leave from tennis when she was diagnosed with cancer and had to undergo treatment. However, she recently announced she is cancer free and prepared to make her return to the sport.

Being a fighter is nothing new to Duval, as she has overcome many obstacles in her life. She was robbed at gun point at the age of 7 and she had family in Haiti during the 2010 earthquake.

Other high level players in the tournament are Shelby Rogers and An-Sophie Mestach, who both rank in the top 150 women’s singles players in the world. Local Middle States players competing include 2010 Champ Alexandra Mueller (Abington, Pa.), along with 18-year-old Lebanon County native Bridget Forster.

The Koser Jeweler Tennis Challenge has grown over the years, getting sponsors from local businesses and having local families house players. Some events that are taking place this year during the tournament are the Women’s Brunch and Fashion Show, Wear White for Water Street and Junior Color Wars.

Qualifying will begin on Sunday, with main draw beginning Tuesday. USTA Middle States will host a member appreciation day on Sunday, August 16, during the final matches.

The calendar of events, as well as other info, can be found here.

Recent past winners: Singles
August 2014- Paula Kania
August 2013 – Madison Brengle
May 2013 – Aliso Kleybanova
May 2012 – Piia Suomalainen
May 2011 – Robin Anderson

Hempfield Area Recreation Commission is a 2015 Middle States Premier Provider. Every year, Middle States recognizes the facilities and organizations that excel in providing many of the adaptations and programs the USTA offers for its communities.

Click here to learn more about Premier Providers.

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