McEnroe, Haas, Blake, and Martin to headline Connecticut Open tennis legends event

Tennis players John McEnroe and James Blake clasping hands.
John McEnroe and James Blake

The Connecticut Open tennis tournament has announced that the lineup has been set for this year’s edition of its popular men’s legends event. One of a series of special events during the weeklong women’s professional tournament, held at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale, the 2018 legends competition will feature James Blake, Tommy Haas, Todd Martin, and John McEnroe.

Yale community members can watch both the men’s and women’s matches at a discount thanks to special ticket offers available throughout the tournament (see details below).

Haas — the former world’s no. 2 player and a silver medalist at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000 — is a newcomer this year to legends competition. The event, part of a circuit covering nine U.S. states and Toronto, is limited to retired champions over the age of 30. Haas, a winner of 15 career singles titles, only recently retired from the men’s professional tour. He reached the semifinals of the Australian Open in 1999, 2002, and 2007, and the semifinals of Wimbledon in 2009. Since 2016 he has been the director of the BNP Paribas Open, a men’s and women’s professional tennis tournament in Indian Wells, California.

On the evening of Thursday, Aug. 23, Haas will square off against another former pro and current tournament director, Blake, who grew up in Fairfield, has headlined every edition of the Connecticut Open’s legends draw. In January he was tapped to lead the Miami Open, the so-called “fifth grand slam” of tennis.

Todd Martin playing tennis.
Todd Martin

The winner of the match between Blake and Haas will return to the courts the following night to meet the victor in a second semifinal, held on Friday, Aug. 24, between McEnroe and Martin. McEnroe, a hall of famer since 1999, holds 16 grand slam trophies in singles and doubles combined; this will be his third appearance in New Haven. Martin is a two-time grand slam finalist who now serves as chief executive of the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, Rhode Island. He is returning to legends competition for the first time since 2015.

Yale Opening Night Ceremony and discounts

The 2018 Connecticut Open tennis tournament will take place from Aug. 17 to 25, with the third annual Opening Night Ceremony Presented by Yale on Monday, Aug. 20. This year’s opening night will feature a new Yale “street fair” format, with interactive booths and displays, roving a cappella singers, raffles and giveaways, and meet-and-greet sessions with special guests. Further details will be announced later this spring.

This year’s tournament also features new and enhanced ticket offers for members of the Yale community, who can purchase tickets at significantly reduced prices for all sessions, including the men’s legends nights and the WTA singles and doubles finals on Saturday, Aug. 25. Bronze-level seats are $10 each, silver-level seats are $20, and gold-level seats are $40 while supplies last. (The non-Yale price for gold-level box seats ranges from $60 to $110.) The tournament also offers a 25% discount on platinum-level seats. To access these special offers, use the code CO18YALE when ordering from the tournament box office starting Thursday, May 10 — more than a month before tickets go on sale to the general public.

A raffle of free tickets to attend the Opening Night Ceremony Presented by Yale will be offered to Yale faculty, staff, and students later this spring. Opening night specials for alumni will be announced soon.

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