Volvo Car Open draws tennis stars and fans from across Lowcountry

DANIEL ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - Tennis fans from all over the Lowcountry are flocking to Daniel Island for the Volvo Car Open this week.

In its 44th year, the tournament draws some of the top women tennis players around the world.

For many of the stars, the Volvo Car Open is a game changer in their season, requiring them to switch over from a hard surface court, to clay.

"You can practice and practice and practice, but until you get out there in a match it's always a little bit different," said 2010 Volvo Car Champion Samantha Stosur.

Stosur said the Volvo Car Open is one of her favorite tournaments to play in, not only because of the clay court, but also the area.

"The food is amazing," Stosur said. "This is a place where I've had success before, and I feel really comfortable," So hopefully I can draw on a little bit of that experience this time around."

"It's always nice to come back to a tournament you've done well at," said Madison Keys, the number one seed in the tournament. "I definitely feel a little bit more at home here. It's one of the few tournaments in the states, and I just love being here. I love the fans, I definitely love the food."

Stosur and Keys aren't the only stars returning this year.

Fan favorite, and 2004 Champion Venus Williams is back and ready to go all the way with the support of Charleston area tennis fans.

"[They're] so supportive!" Williams said.  "There are times when you're a little bit down, a little bit out, and you can hear them. [That's when] I say 'okay I gotta do this for the crowd, I gotta get this up.' It's that little extra motivation outside of yourself."

While stars from all over the world have traveled here to Charleston, one fan favorite didn't have to come too far.

Shelby Rogers is appearing once again in the tournament. Her match in the first round was suspended due to rain Monday night.

"I've got my fingers crossed," said tennis fan Jennifer Anderson. "She's definitely the one I'm rooting for because we'd love to see her go far, and it would be great if she could win this tournament.

"I think Shelby has obviously been playing really well," Keys said. "She's had some really good results. I've known Shelby for a really long time… we used to share rooms out on the tour."

The pros add supporting each other is important in this tournament also, because of the way it's set up, women's only, and it's one of the few tournaments stateside.

In 2016 more than 92,000 people attended the matches during the week-long tournament.

Final matches are set for Sunday. Tickets are still available.

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