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Stuttgart. The Porsche Tennis Grand Prix picks up speed on Monday. There’s the first main draw match between Mona Barthel and Carina Witthöft, the Stuttgarter Ballet performance, the duel between the tennis legends Andre Agassi and Thomas Muster and the presentation of the players – one highlight follows the other on the Centre Court in the Porsche Arena.

Tennis-wise, the day gets underway with the four qualifying finals – without German participation. On Sunday, first Porsche Talent Team Germany’s Anna-Lena Friedsam lost 6-2, 7-6 to American Bethanie Mattek-Sands and then her teammate Katharina Hobgarski also exited the tournament in the second round of qualification. The 17-year old was defeated 6-3, 6-0 by the Russian Evgeniya Rodina after celebrating the biggest win of her young career on the day before.

At 6.00 in the evening, the Porsche Arena’s Centre Court will be transformed into a ballet stage. The Stuttgarter Ballet company will present “MatchBox”, a piece specially choreographed by Louis Stiens for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix. Tennis action will then take centre stage immediately afterwards when American Andre Agassi and Austrian Thomas Muster serve up the eagerly awaited Berenberg Classics duel of tennis legends. Andre Agassi, the eight-time Grand Slam winner and husband of Steffi Graf, won 60-career titles and was the world No. 1 for a total of 101 weeks. Thomas Muster, who also headed the world rankings, celebrated his biggest success when he won the 1995 French Open.

At 7.30, it will be a case of “curtains up” for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix stars at the presentation of the players. Led by title-holder Maria Sharapova, eight Top-10 players are appearing at the long-running Stuttgart tournament. The Porsche Team Germany players will have also returned from Sochi where they faced Russia in the Fed Cup semifinal. Despite a fantastic fight back, Angelique Kerber, Andrea Petkovic, Sabine Lisicki and Julia Görges eventually went out 3-2.

The second tennis highlight on the Centre Court will follow immediately afterwards. Porsche Team Germany’s Mona Barthel will meet Carina Witthöft, a member of the Porsche Talent Team Germany Deutschland to ring in the tournament proper’s week of tennis highlights.

19/04/2015

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