5 September 2014

By Tashkent Open 2014 Media Team

Tashkent Open began as a   international tennis women competition in 1996, it  received a shot in the arm when it received the  WTA Tour status in 1999. In its 17th year Tashkent Open which has a rich history  of  propelling   talented tennis youngsters  into tennis stardom will be played from September 5- 13  at the Olympic Tennis Complex.

 In the history of the world the city of Tashkent  enjoys the pride of being one of   most important cities on the ancient Silk Route, it has been a spectator to the rise and fall of civilizations , but having withstood the changes across centuries  the city has made its mark as one of the most beautiful and vibrant cities on the globe.

The story of Tashkent Open one of the biggest tennis events of Central Asia the Tashkent Open WTA Championships  is  as exciting and similar  as the History of the City itself .  In its 17th year Tashkent Open has set up a record of sorts    throwing up talented  tennis youngsters  into tennis stardom .

Some of the illustrious names in women's tennis like Anastasia Myskina , Elena Dementieva  , Franchesca Schiavone , Dinara Safina , Maria Kirlenko , Elena Vesnina, Victoria Azaarenka , Dominica   , Pauline Parmentier,  Mikhila Krajicek ,  Shahar Peer  ,  Ksenia  Pervak  , Sabine Lisicki , Marion Bartoli   Irina Camelia Begu  and current  title holder     Bojana Jovanovski have seen their stocks rise on the world stage after their varied  performances at the Tashkent Open over 2 decades



Many of the Tennis fans have seen these youngsters  rough  it out on the courts , to earn valuable points and  confidence for  a lifetime . The struggle, the challenges and the talent of  these players  have been applauded  and appreciated by  the Uzbek Tennis fans  even before they became    stars  and household names across the globe

Tashkent Open has played a significant role in he rise of these stars, the extraordinary Uzbek Hospitality , the magnificent organization and the love and support of the Uzbek fans has taken the players to  the next level and motivated them to do  better in their careers , apart from pleasant  memories the players have also taken back loads of love and good wishes from the tennis loving Uzbek fans  .

With ideal climate for tennis in September and the   genuine gesture of the sports loving citizens of the historic city of Tashkent and  efforts of  Uzbekistan Tennis Federation,   to offer the best hospitality to players  “ We are happy to see stronger entry lists for the Tashkent Open over the years  says Igor Shepelov the  General Secretary of the Uzbek Tennis Federation

“I’m glad that the event has done wonders to careers of so many young women's tennis players. Tashkent Open is one of the events to have given wings to unknown tennis players from around the globe “Says tournament Director S. Uthrapathy

Apart from the host of international tennis stars the event has thrown up over the years, the rise of Uzbek womens Tennis power cannot be ignored. Uzbek star Iroda Tulyaganova won the title in 2000 and finished runners-up in 2006 , Olympian Akgul Amanmuradova was unfortunate not to pocket the title inspite of reaching the finals twice in 2005 and 2009.

The notable progress of young stars Sabina Sharapova and Nigina Abduraimova in the last couple of years , is giving the tennis  enthusiasts something to cheer about , a big result from either of  them will provide the perfect cherry on the cake  .

The number of young  Uzbek girls aspiring to showcase their talent at the biggest tennis event  in the country is also on the rise. The young stars may not end up winners but surely  take back a lot of tennis wisdom from watching the  top stars in action.

The 15th edition which showcased participants from over 17 countries , saw Bojana Jovanovski who entered the event late  qualify  for the main draw and eventually annex  the title after six matches winning spree

In  a close   finals   Jovanovski   scored a 4-6,7-5,7-6(3) win over  the    Belarusian Govortsova  , while Top seeds Yaraslova Shvedova of Kazakhstan and Timea Babos of Hungary  lifted the doubles title.

 I love the Tashkent Open and wanted to play , even though I missed the entry deadline.  I entered the event and didn't mind going through the grind " said Jovanovski  whose words speak eloquently about players  love for the event.

  I  had a tough year and it is  great to finish on good note winning, The title at  Tashkent means a lot to me   will come back next year to one of my most favorite events on the WTA tour",  said the 21 year old  Serbian Jovanovski  who won the top prize money purse of $40,000 and 280 ranking points and the traditional Chapan in 2013

However in the history of the last 15  years at the Tashkent Open , no champion has  defended their  singles crown , the reason may be that the event is destined  to throw up new stars on the horizon every year .