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Fifth Third qualifying starts Saturday

Some of the world's top tennis players will be in Lexington to compete at the Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships.

The Lexington tournament is part of the USTA Pro Circuit, which is where U.S. players accumulate ranking points. Qualifying rounds are Saturday and Sunday and will be followed by the start of the main draw on Monday.

Players from the U.S. will also be using the event to try and earn a wild card into the U.S. Open, which starts Aug. 26.

On the men's side this is the second of the four events from which their two best finishes are combined to calculate a point total.

For the women it is the third of three events.

The top American male expected to appear is Alex Kuznetsov. Kuznetsov, ranked No. 173, is expected to be joined by Bradley Klahn as only other American qualifying for the main draw.

Another player to watch is Olivier Rochus. The Belgian is ranked No. 138. He won the junior doubles title at Wimbledon with Roger Federer in 1998 and went on to have a career-best ranking of No. 24 in 2005.

Julia Glushko. 23, of Israel is the defending women's champion. She has won two singles tournaments this year as well as a doubles tournament.

American Lauren Davis is expected to be the top-ranked player. Other contenders for the wild card expected to play are Shelby Rogers and Irina Falconi.


Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships

When: Qualifying rounds, July 20-21; main draw, July 22-28; finals, 2 p.m. July 28

Where: Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex

Tickets: $10 daily or $50 for weeklong pass. Qualifying weekend is free.