The players list for the Subaru Sherbrooke Futures presented by Rouge FM, was unveiled on Thursday. Sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation (ITF), the tournament, which offers $25, 000 U.S. in total prize money, an increase of $10,000 compared to previous years, will be held from March 5-13, 2016 at the Christian Bourque indoor tennis courts of the Rock Forest Recreation Centre in Sherbrooke.
“This year’s list is a good mix of experienced players and young rising stars who are trying to become the next big names in men’s tennis,” said Tournament Director Richard Quirion. “Several Canadians are among the rising stars, so it will be an opportunity for tennis fans in the Sherbrooke area to watch players they will probably hear a lot about in the future.”
This year, two Canadians, Philip Bester (Vancouver, BC) and Frank Dancevic (Niagara Falls, ON) have earned direct entry into the main draw and they will be among the tournament’s top seeds. 31-year-old Dancevic, ranked no. 245 in the world, is slated to be the second seed. He will be coming to Sherbrooke from Guadeloupe where he will represent Canada in Davis Cup against France next week. Last fall, Dancevic won three consecutive Futures tournaments on Canadian soil and reached another final during a 19 match win streak. For his part, world no. 275 Bester will also be arriving from Guadeloupe after serving as a hitting partner for the Canadian Davis Cup team. In 2015, Bester also enjoyed success at Canadian events. He won a Futures event in Richmond, BC, reached the final in Gatineau, and reached the biggest final of his career at the $100,000 Granby National Bank Challenger.
Several Canadians will also compete in qualifying including up and coming players, 15 year-old Félix Auger-Aliassime (Montreal, QC) and 16-year-old Denis Shapovalov (Richmond Hill, ON). The two players joined forces last summer to win the junior U.S. Open doubles title and also led Canada to its first junior Davis Cup title. Both players have already proven that they have the game to compete with the pros. Auger-Aliassime, currently ranked no. 11 on the world junior rankings, became the youngest player in history to qualify for a Challenger event when he accomplished the feat in Drummondville last year. A few months later, he reached the quarter-finals in Granby. For his part, Shapovalov captured his maiden Futures title in Florida in January. Four players from qualifying will book a spot in the main draw.
Eight countries will be represented during the 2016 edition of the tournament. Leading the way is world no. 244 Tennys Sandgren of the United States, a finalist last year in Sherbrooke. Edward Corrie of Great Britain, Sherbrooke’s 2015 champion will also be back to defend his title. In addition a pair of former junior world no. 2s, 18-year-old American Stefan Kozlov and 22-year-old Brit Liam Broady, will be looking to continue their transition to the pros in Sherbrooke.
The Subaru Sherbrooke Futures presented by Rouge FM is the second in a series of three tournaments that will be played in Quebec during the month of March. The event will be followed by the Drummondville National Bank Challenger.