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DIRECTV and ESPN Invite the Public to Come Out and Play

NEW YORK—(BUSINESS WIRE)— On the eve of the year’s last grand slam tennis event, the 2009 US Open, New York City’s Bryant Park will be the epicenter of the tennis world when DIRECTV and ESPN roll out the hard courts for the DIRECTV ESPN US Open Experience on Aug. 26 - a free tennis exhibition and USTA clinic featuring some of the biggest names in the sport that will be open to the public.

The green lawns of Bryant Park, in the heart of midtown Manhattan, will be transformed into two regulation US Open tennis courts from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for exhibition matches between USTA pros, including Venus and Serena Williams; former pros - turned TV commentators the Jensen brothers; the World’s current No. 1 Men’s doubles team the Bryan brothers and James Blake.

The event in Bryant Park will showcase ESPN2’s coverage of the 2009 US Open and DIRECTV’s US OPEN Experience, a free, interactive service that will offer expanded coverage of the action from Flushing Meadows. DIRECTV’s US OPEN Experience includes more than 435 hours of live tennis action, up to 140 extra matches that cannot be seen anywhere else, with five extra court channels in addition to the main ESPN2 feed - all displayed on DIRECTV’s innovative six-on-one-screen Mix Channel, and presented in HD. More DIRECTV US Open programming information is available by visiting DIRECTV.com/usopen.

When tennis stars are not competing, the courts will be open to the people of New York City. The day will begin and end with USTA teaching pros putting the public through the paces with a variety of skills challenges that will focus on serving, receiving and groundstrokes. From 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. the aforementioned tennis stars will compete in lively and exciting exhibition tie-break matches against one another in various combinations.

In the first year of a six-year agreement with the USTA, tennis fans will enjoy 100 hours in high definition on ESPN2 beginning Aug. 31, US Open update shows each weekday on ESPNEWS, more than 300 hours on ESPN360.com’s multi-court offering and coverage across ESPN’s platforms in the U.S. and around the world.

DIRECTV will offer ESPN2’s national coverage during the tournament’s first five days, Aug. 31 through Sept. 4, and three days of coverage from CBS, Sept. 4-7. Each live court channel will feature natural sound and commentary from tennis experts and former touring pros. An interactive application menu will be available on each of those channels via the red button on the DIRECTV remote and will feature:

Match Guide, for a convenient view of the score of the current match on each court channel; Recent Results, offering real-time scoring of in-progress, completed and upcoming singles matches; Women’s Draw and Men’s Draw - providing the complete draw from first to final round, along with scores.

 

SportMaster

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