The Rome Tennis Center at Berry College was selected as the host of the 2021 USTA Southern Junior Team Tennis Section Championships, tournament director Adam Dalton announced Tuesday.

The dates of the championships are set for Aug. 13-15.

At least 55 teams with about 500 players from throughout Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee are expected to play. Typically, at least eight players — plus managers, coaches and parents — travel to the tournament, with some teams brining more than 12 individuals. The tournament expects to use 385 hotel rooms.

The tournament will be played at the Rome Tennis Center at Berry College that has 57 full-size tennis courts with lights for night play. Six of the courts are indoor. The Southern JTT championships were played there from 2016-19.

The facility, which was opened in July 2016, has won two notable national awards: 2019 USTA Outstanding Facility of the Year and 2019 Racquet Sports Industry magazine’s Municipal Facility of the Year.

The city’s Downtown Tennis Center may also be used for some matches.

USTA Southern Junior Team Tennis Committee Chair Aaron Browning said in a release. “We are very happy to return to Rome, which boasts one of the best tennis centers in the country. Since we played our last championships there in 2019, they have built an impressive viewing platform and enlarged the indoor facility. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Ann Hortman and the fantastic local tennis community.”

Rome Sports director Ann Hortman expressed her support as the city attracted another major tennis tournament.

“The USTA Southern JTT Championships was the first junior event hosted when the tennis center opened,” Hortman said. “Rome is a tournament town and we are delighted the championship is returning. We look forward to extending our unrivaled Southern hospitality.”

USTA’s JTT program supports co-ed teams in four age levels with more than 25,000 players in USTA Southern. The teams, which represent various clubs, parks, recreational departments and organizations, have finished at the top of their local leagues played in 10-and-under, 12- and-under, 14-and under, and 18-and-under levels. Within each age level, teams are divided into two different skill levels: intermediate and advanced.

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