10 memorable moments from the 2023 Credit One Charleston Open

10 memorable moments from the 2023 Credit One Charleston Open

Credit One Stadium court. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Charleston Tennis)

How does it always go so fast? It seems like it was only a moment ago that we were welcoming fans for qualifying matches and Family Weekend at the Credit One Charleston Open, but the 2023 tournament has gone by in a flash – with many memories made along the way.

Here, we pick ten things we won’t soon forget – from both on the court and off of it.

1. Ons-stoppable: Jabeur is Charleston champ

A year after finishing runner-up to Belinda Bencic, Jabeur came back to Charleston with doubt around her, having been 4-4 in 2023 and undergone minor knee surgery in February. But the No. 2 seed was strong from the start, and didn’t drop a set in five matches played, capturing her fourth title – and first in the U.S. With 38 match wins on clay since 2020, she leads the WTA.

2. Jabeur and Bencic make history with championship rematch

While the champion’s trophy belonged to Jabeur this time around, she and Bencic made history at an event that is over 50 years old: They’re the first pair to play one another in back-to-back finals. Bencic was trying to become the first player to repeat as champion since Serena Williams did it in 2012-13.

3. Crowds flock to Daniel Island – from all over

From Family Weekend into championship Sunday, crowds flocked to Daniel Island, with packed crowds for many afternoon sessions and vibrant evenings. In total, fans came from 48 states and 12 different countries.

4. Doubles delight: Collins/Krawczyk claim surprise win

Speaking of crowds, doubles has always been a fan favorite for Charleston, and this year proved no different, with fans following the action on Credit One Stadium, Althea Gibson Club Court and beyond. With a collection of top doubles stars in the world competing, it was the unseeded duo of Danielle Collins and Desirae Krawczyk of the U.S. who emerged champions, a first title for Danielle and eighth for Des.

See doubles photos here

5. A historic quartet: Top 4 make semis

Green clay can be slippery, especially in the first week of the clay season as players transition from hard courts. But the top stars held their nerve – and their places in the draw – with each of Jabeur, Bencic and No. 1 Jessica Pegula and No. 3 Daria Kasatkina making the semifinals. They were the first top-seeded quartet to make the semifinals since 2006.

6. Shelby Rogers makes spirited return

Never has the Lowcountry had so much to cheer about in women’s professional tennis as two local natives in Shelby Rogers and Emma Navarro featured in the main draw. Rogers made a spirited return, winning two come-from-behind victories over Collins and Caty McNally, respectively, before being stopped in third round by defending champ Bencic.

Shelby Rogers waves farewell. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Charleston Tennis)

7. New mom Elina Svitolina is back on tour 

Just six months after giving birth to her daughter Skaï, former world No. 3 Elina Svitolina made a surprise return to tour as a Charleston wild card. She fought hard in a tough three-set first-round tussle with Yulia Putintseva, but the win was being back on court: “It was a good atmosphere, it felt special… when I walked on court.”

8. Raising awareness and funds for Ukraine, Turkey & Syria

The tournament featured several charity efforts, notably a Pro-Am on Sunday to start the tournament, a “Tennis Plays for Peace” in conjunction with WTA Charities and Svitolina’s non-profit. That fundraiser raised $100,000 for the relief effort in Ukraine, while the Credit One Charleston Open and WTA Charities also pledged $100 for each ace hit throughout the tournament.

With 430 aces hit, a total $43,000 will be donated by the tournament.

9. Andrea Petkovic & ‘Racquet’ show us a new side of Charleston

There’s always something new to discover in Charleston, and this year former Charleston Open champion Andrea Petkovic returned to explore and share as much, teaming up with Racquet Magazine for a nightly happy hour on site and a series of videos showcasing the culinary, cultural and tennis-rich area that Lowcountry is.

10. Saying farewell to a favorite: Eleanor Adams

No one embodies the Charleston Open more than tournament manager Eleanor Adams. After 23 years in the role, Eleanor is walking away from a job she had no blueprint – but plenty of heart – for. “She’s given this place life,” said Sloane Stephens in a speech honoring Adams.

Eleanor will be missed, much like all of you fans, too. We’ll see you right back here for next year’s Credit One Charleston Open, March 30-April 7, 2024.