HBO will air “BNP Paribas Showdown for the Billie Jean King Cup” live on March 2, 2009 at 7:30pm EST from Madison Square Garden. The program, which celebrates tennis legend Billie Jean King, will feature 2008 US Open Champion -Serena Williams, 2008 Wimbledon Champion - Venus Williams, 2008 French Open Champion - Ana Ivanovic and World #1 - Jelena Jankovic in a one-night-only single-elimination event. The event is part of the national “Tennis Night in America” promotion. Tickets for the match can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden box office, Ticketmaster outlets or at www.thegarden.com.
Limited front row VIP tickets priced at $1,000.00 and additional tickets listed at $325.00, $175.00, $125.00, $75.00, and $50.00 went on sale today. "I am honored to be part of an event that showcases Serena, Venus, Jelena, and Ana – four of the best players in women's tennis today -- in one of the most storied tennis venues in the world," said sports icon and tennis legend Billie Jean King. "This collection of players, competing in this spectacular venue, in an event that benefits the Women's Sports Foundation and other organizations, is the perfect mix to deliver an exciting and entertaining celebration of women's sports and tennis."
The pool of players for this one night event is unprecedented, including three women who over the course of the 2008 season held the World No. 1 ranking and all four of whom have been No. 1 at least once in their career. The grouping also consists of three Grand Slam winners, as well as four of the eight qualifiers of the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour’s season-ending Championships which was recently captured by Venus Williams in Doha.
Serena Williams, currently ranked No.2 in the latest Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Rankings, holds a total of 44 titles (32 singles / 12 doubles) at Tour events, including 18 Grand Slam titles (nine singles titles, seven doubles titles and two mixed doubles titles). The summer of 2008 garnered all her highlights for this past year. Serena played in the finals at Wimbledon and most recently she captured her third US Open title when she defeated Jelena Jankovic at the USTA Center in New York and returned to the World No.1 ranking, which she held for four weeks in 2008. The Williams sisters as a team recently captured their third Wimbledon Doubles Championship this year and for the second consecutive Olympic Games captured the women’s doubles gold medal. Together they have won a total of 12 doubles championships including seven Grand Slam doubles titles.