For Immediate Release
Springfield Lasers Complete Draft, Announce Schedule
The World TeamTennis (WTT) Pro League, presented by GEICO, completed its 37th Season Professional League Players Draft earlier today. The Springfield Lasers drafted all new players in all four rounds.
"I'm very excited about this year's draft. In particular, our women are going to be fantastic, perhaps the strongest in the league," said Bob Belote, Springfield Lasers Ownership Representative. "It was a good solid draft for us and I think our fans will be pleased."
The 2012 Springfield Lasers roster includes:
1st Round Pick (Roster Draft): Timea Babos – Entering her first season of WTT on the heels of her first Women's Tennis Association (WTA) tour title in Mexico's Monterrey Open, Babos achieved her career-high singles ranking of No. 68 in February. She has won nine International Tennis Federation (ITF) singles and nine ITF doubles titles, and earned junior doubles titles at the French Open, Wimbledon and US Open. This 18-year-old Hungarian player is currently ranked No. 68 in singles and No. 132 in doubles.
2nd Round Pick (Roster Draft): Maria Sanchez – Now in her second season of WTT, Sanchez replaced Lindsey Davenport with the St. Louis Aces for much of the 2011 season. This year, Sanchez has won ITF doubles titles in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. and Surprise, Ariz., and the USTA/ITA National Indoor Singles Championship. She was California's top-ranked female coming out of high school, and has played four years for the University of Southern California. At age 22, Sanchez is ranked No. 480 in singles and No. 191 in doubles.
3rd Round Pick (Roster Draft): Amir Weintraub – On the ATP world tour, Weintraub has already won the Israel F3 Futures title and competed in Australian Open qualifying this year. In 2011, he defeated then-No. 31 Milos Raonic in Davis Cup play. He reached his career-high singles ranking of No. 170 in October 2011. His career includes seven ITF Pro singles and 11 doubles titles. Weintraub, 25, is now ranked No. 203 in singles and No. 345 in doubles. This will be his first WTT season. He lives in Israel.
4th Round Pick (Roster Draft): Devin Britton – Advanced to the Mexico F2 Futures semifinals and reached his career-high ATP singles ranking of No. 276 earlier this year. He reached the US Open junior singles final in 2008 and Wimbledon juniors semifinals in 2009. This will be Britton's first WTT season, although he participated in Smash Hits in 2009 — the same year he became the youngest NCAA singles champion, as a freshman at the University of Mississippi. He tweets regularly as @devinbritton. Now age 20, Britton is ranked No. 642 in singles and No. 313 in doubles.
A special marquee visit from former No. 1 Lindsay Davenport highlights the Springfield Lasers upcoming 2012 home schedule. The Olympic gold medalist and three-time Grand Slam singles champion last made an appearance at a Lasers home match in 2010. She returns to Springfield Monday, July 16, with the Orange County Breakers.
The Springfield Lasers complete season schedule includes (home matches in bold)
- Monday, July 9: Kansas City Explorers at Springfield Lasers
- Tuesday, July 19: Springfield Lasers at New York Sportimes
- Wednesday, July 11: Washington Kastles at Springfield Lasers
- Friday, July 13: Springfield Lasers at Kansas City Explorers
- Saturday, July 14: Springfield Lasers at Philadelphia Freedoms
- Sunday, July 15: Springfield Lasers at Boston Lobsters
- Monday, July 16: Orange County Breakers at Springfield Lasers
- Thursday, July 19: Sacramento Capitals at Springfield Lasers
- Sunday, July 22: Springfield Lasers at Sacramento Capitals
- Monday, July 23: Springfield Lasers at Orange County Breakers
- Tuesday, July 24: Springfield Lasers at Kansas City Explorers
- Wednesday, July 25: Kansas City Explorers at Springfield Lasers
- Friday, July 27: New York Sportimes at Springfield Lasers
- Saturday, July 28: Washington Kastles at Springfield Lasers
Tickets for all games, including the Davenport match, are available now only through purchase of Lasers season tickets, $65 for open grandstand seats and $135 for box seats, and can be purchased online at www.springfieldlasers.com. Individual home match tickets go on sale May 7 at Cooper Tennis Complex.
The Springfield Lasers are coming off of a 4-10 season in 2011. Eight pro teams will compete for the 2012 King Trophy over the duration of the WTT season, July 9-28. All seven Lasers home matches are played in the Mediacom Tennis Stadium at Cooper Tennis Complex.
Complete results from today's draft are available at www.wtt.com. For more information and updates on the Springfield Lasers, visit www.springfieldlasers.com. For media inquiries, call Tom Adams, Springfield Lasers General Manager, 417-864-1339 or 417-766-1894; or Bob Belote, Lasers Ownership Representative, 417-864-1049.