USTA Girls Nationals Headed to San Diego

A familiar name will ring through the crowd at this year’s USTA National Girls 18s & 16s Championships, scheduled to begin August 4 at Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego. The event, which dates back to the early 1900s, will now be known as the Billie Jean King Girls 18s and 16s Nationals.

Billie Jean King, seen here in 1977, learned to play tennis on the public courts near her Long Beach, Calif., home.

San Diego has hosted the championships since 1990, a who’s who of women’s tennis lore that includes past champions Chris Evert, Tracy Austin, Lindsay Davenport, and Jennifer Capriati. Kayla Day (Santa Barbara) and Ashley Kratzer (Newport Beach) are most recent winners in the 18s division.

The Billie Jean King Girls Nationals, presented by adidas, is a prestigious event that comes with a valuable attribute. Tournament winners earn the title “National Champion” and receive an automatic wild card entry in the main draw of the US Open (18s) and Junior US Open (16s) beginning in August. USTA Pro Circuit wild card berths are also distributed.

The tournament also acknowledges the winner of the Maureen Connolly Brinker award for the most outstanding player during the season.

Matches begin Saturday, August 4 at 10am and continue through August 12. To view the full schedule, visit www.ustagirlsnationals.com.

“I’m honored to be part of these junior championships and support the goals and dreams of these players on and off the court,” said King upon the announcement of the renaming. Her name will also be added to the Intersectional Team Championships in 2019.

“Billie has devoted her life to promoting tennis and ensuring that our sport is welcoming to all,” said Katrina Adams, USTA Chairman of the Board and President. “Both of these events epitomize what she stands for – excellence, team play and gender equality. We are honored to have her name associated with both these great events.”

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