Pro Tennis Tournament Nets $9,000 for Charity
The McLeod for Health Florence Open Tennis Tournament recently donated its 2019 profits — a total of $9,000 — to Susan G. Komen South Carolina to help fight breast cancer in the northeastern region of South Carolina.
City of Florence Director of Tennis and McLeod Open Tournament Director Rob Hill expressed his appreciation to McLeod Health for another successful event benefitting Komen South Carolina and women at risk for breast cancer. He added that over the last six years, the McLeod for Health Florence Open has raised $60,000 for Susan G. Komen South Carolina.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 McLeod for Health Florence Open was cancelled by the City of Florence in late August. “Because of COVID-19, the city cancelled the majority of the events between August and the pro tournament, which was scheduled for the week of October 12, 2020. However, we are looking forward to bringing the McLeod for Health Florence Open back next year, and we have already discussed our plans for 2021 with the USTA Competitive Pathway.”
McLeod Breast Surgeon Dr. Amy Murrell added that McLeod Health will remain the title sponsor for the 2021 McLeod Open, which will be held at the Dr. Eddie Floyd Florence Tennis Center next October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
“For the safety and protection of all involved from the national and international tennis players who participate in the McLeod for Health Florence Open as well as our officials and spectators we knew postponing the tournament to next year was in everyone’s best interest,” explained Dr. Murrell.
Over the years, Susan G. Komen South Carolina has provided significant grant funding to Pee Dee area programs for mammograms, follow-up diagnostic procedures, patient navigation services, and survivor support services, including transportation. “We are pleased that we can make this donation to Komen South Carolina to support the breast cancer programs they fund which benefit our patients locally,” added Dr. Murrell.
The week-long International Tennis Federation (ITF) Women’s World Tennis Tour draws some of the best young professional players from around the world to compete for $25,000 in prize money and higher rankings. With more than 500 tournaments held annually across 65 countries, the ITF Women’s Tour is the pathway to the U.S. Open and tour-level competition for aspiring tennis players and a frequent battleground for established professionals. The results of ITF tournaments are incorporated into the WTA Ranking, which enables professionals to progress through to the elite levels of women’s professional tennis. The Women’s World Tennis Tour is also designed to target prize money effectively to help reduce costs for players and ultimately enable more players to make a living.
A couple of the more notable recent winners of the McLeod for Health Florence Open include 2019 U.S. Open Champion Bianca Andreescu and 2018 U.S. Open Champion Naomi Osaka.
Florence, one of the smallest cities on the circuit, was selected to host an event because of its world-class courts, its strong volunteer base, and the generosity of its sponsors.
This eight-day tournament puts Florence on the world tennis map and generates significant tourism revenues for our community.