JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — Professional tennis is coming back to Joplin after a one-year absence caused by the deadly May 2011 tornado.

Joplin has been a regular stop on the U.S. Tennis Association’s Pro Circuit since 2000. The organization canceled its 2011 event but is returning to southwest Missouri starting Friday with qualifiers for a Futures tournament. The tennis association donated $100,000 toward Joplin’s recovery last year.

The event at Millennium Tennis & Fitness Club continues through Sunday, July 22. The winner of a wild-card tournament that started Monday at the Joplin tennis club earns an automatic bid into the main tournament.

The tournament includes a July 21 community day featuring tennis drills and games for young players.

© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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