Photo: Sarah-Jade Champagne
– Granby National Bank Championships to revert back to a combined Challenger tournament
– Edmonton to host its first mixed Challenger event
– Odlum Brown VanOpen cancelled in 2023 due to renovations
Today, Tennis Canada announced several changes to the official 2023 calendar of professional tennis tournaments played in Canada.
First, the federation confirmed that the Granby National Bank Championships, which included a WTA 250 tournament in 2022, will revert to a combined Challenger event featuring an ATP Tour Challenger 100 and an ITF Women’s World Tennis Tour 100 competition. Held from July 16 to 23 at Tennis St-Luc, the Championships will offer higher prize money than in the past as they become Canada’s most competitive Challenger event of 2023.
“This summer, the Granby National Bank Championships are returning to their historic mission as a stepping stone for Canadian players seeking to embark on an international career, just like Milos Raonic, Eugenie Bouchard, Bianca Andreescu, Leylah Fernandez, Denis Shapovalov and Félix Auger-Aliassime did before them,” said Richard Quirion, Granby tournament director and director of Tennis Canada’s professional and international tournaments in Québec. “In 2022, we realized that our place in the WTA calendar forced Canadians to choose between our tournament and the US Open qualifying tournament, which wasn’t beneficial to the Championships or to our players in their quest for ranking points. Reverting to the Challenger format and offering higher prize money was the solution. More Canadian women will now have the opportunity to play, and that’s our priority.”
“Granby has been a tennis city for many years, and that’s why we’re very pleased to renew our commitment to Tennis Canada for the next Granby National Bank Championships. The tournament is a major event for our city, and we believe it’s important to pledge our support to organizers to ensure its success. The residents of Granby are proud of their tennis tournament, and they can count on the city to continue the tradition,” said Julie Bourdon, Mayor of Granby.
Inaugural edition of the Edmonton National Bank Challenger
Tennis Canada also announced the addition of a new Challenger competition to the 2023 calendar: the Edmonton National Bank Challenger. Held from October 29 to November 5 at the Royal Glenora Club, the tournament will offer $25,000 in total prize money for the women’s and men’s events. It is the sixth stop on the National Bank Challenger Tour, along with the tournaments in Winnipeg, Granby, Saguenay, Calgary and Drummondville.
Edmonton will be hosting a combined professional tournament, though the provincial capital has welcomed several high-profile tennis events in the past, including 2017 Davis Cup and 2006 Billie Jean King Cup competitions, an ITF tournament in 2004 and a women’s Challenger in 1999.
“The addition of a tournament in Edmonton is very exciting for Canadian tennis,” said Gavin Ziv, chief tournament officer at Tennis Canada. “With this new competition, we gain our first full professional tournament series in the fall, with seven events taking place between October 9 and November 19. This is a significant advantage for Canadian players, who now have more opportunities to earn valuable ranking points or compete in their first professional tournament without having to go abroad.”
More major changes
At the same time, Tennis Canada shared the key changes to other Canadian tournaments.
- The federation confirmed that the Odlum Brown VanOpen in Vancouver set to take place in August will not be returning this summer as the Hollyburn Country Club is being renovated. The work is planned over at least the next two years, and tournament organizers are currently working to secure another venue for the 2024 edition.
- Two ITF tournaments were added to the calendar: an ITF M25 men’s event in Laval (Québec) from July 9 to 16 and a W25 women’s event from October 9 to 15 in Île-des-Sœurs, just outside downtown Montréal.
- With the additions and changes to the calendar, a number of tournaments had to be rescheduled. Besides Granby, the ITF women’s tournament in Saskatoon (which will be upgraded this year to a W60 level) will now be held from July 9 to 16, and the Winnipeg National Bank Challenger will run from August 13 to 20 at its new site in West St. Paul, following the National Bank Open presented by Rogers in Montréal (WTA) and Toronto (ATP).
Follow this link to see the 2023 calendar of Canadian tennis tournaments.