Louisville pro tennis tournament canceled due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’, director says

Louisville pro tennis tournament canceled due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’, director says

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – The inaugural Louisville International Open set for August has been canceled.

The event was set to take place at the Louisville Boat Club beginning Aug. 17, 2016.

Last September it was a celebration, a groundbreaking at the Louisville Boat Club where plans of expansion and renovations were in the works to gear up for a women's professional tennis tournament.

"I think like everybody in the tennis community, we were wanting to know what the status," USTA Kentucky Executive Director Jason Miller said.

Come to find out, not much has happened since then. The Louisville International Open is now on hold.

Local organizers were granted an extension to postpone the launch until 2017 by the Women's Tennis Association.

WAVE 3 News sat down with managing director Dr. Mike Bewley of Louisville Professional Tennis LLC to find out more. He said the event was canceled this year due to unforeseen circumstances.

"One of the obstacles in Louisville with sports is lack of facilities," Bewley said.

Three new courts and temporary stadium seating were supposed to be built, but that never happened. Bewley said WTA expectations are strict and they had trouble finding an ideal location.

"For major events to happen in Louisville the community has to support it and Louisville is really good at that," Bewley said.

The support did come in, especially through big donors. WAVE 3 News is told it cost more than $13,000 to be a Founders Circle member, but Bewley said he could not comment on exactly how much money had been raised through the program.

As for what happens to the money now, he said certain fees had to be paid to WTA for the right to have the tournament, which goes on in the current contract.

"We're still actively working and trying to put things together and we just ask for people to be patient," Bewley said.

Many in the tennis community just hope this isn't the end.

"Just wish them nothing but the best and hopefully if it is postponed to 2017, that's something we can get behind," Miller said.

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