The Springfield Lasers filled out their roster Tuesday during the World TeamTennis draft with two anchors of the championship winning team returning to Cooper Tennis Complex.
Miomir Kecmanovic and Abigail Spears will be returning to Springfield. Kecmanovic, currently ranked No. 130, is a franchise player for the team and thus will only be appearing in five matches for the Lasers, including four home matches on July 14, 16, 17, and 18.
“It’s good to keep him in the league,” Lasers Coach John-Laffnie de Jager said in a statement. “He’s going to be top 100. He was a major player in helping us win. Hopefully next year he can play more matches.”
Spears, who often has family in the standing cheering her on during home matches, was protected by the team in the draft. She is a doubles expert who made it to the Wimbledon semifinals last year. She is currently ranked No. 31 in doubles by the WTA.
The Lasers first round pick was 26-year-old Brit Joe Salisbury. Salisbury is ranked No. 21 in doubles following a title win at Dubai earlier this month.
After no second round pick, the Lasers made two picks in the third round: Enrique Lopez Perez and Anna Blinkova.
Perez, 27, is from Spain and is ranked No. 138 in doubles and No. 252 in singles by the ATP. General Manager Paul Nahon said in a statement Perez was selected because of the team’s desire to have veteran with both singles and doubles experience.
Blinkova, 20, is currently No. 84 in doubles and No. 104 in singles. The Russian turned pro in 2015 and has three IFA and one WTA singles titles in her career.
Coach de Jager, entering his 13th season coaching the Lasers, said doubles are a key to winning in the WTT.
“I’ve been part of this league for 20 years, and over the years, the teams that win have had strong doubles.” he said in a statement. “We picked up the top men’s doubles player, and with Abi and Anna, we’ll be very strong on the women’s side. The women play a massive role in WTT, and we’re very happy with the team we’ve selected.”
The season opens on Sunday, July 14th at Cooper Tennis Complex when the Lasers face their opponent in last year’s championship, the Philadelphia Freedoms.