Dylan Alcott playing in Bendigo. Photo: BRENDAN McCARTHY.

THE world’s top wheelchair tennis players have converged on Bendigo’s new $6.175 million tennis centre this week for the Bendigo Wheelchair Tennis Open – the first of three competitions in a new Victorian circuit for the sport, and a key lead up to the Australian Open.

This is the first time the ITF Super Series tournament, previously played in Sydney, has been played in Bendigo – and is the centre’s first major tournament.

This is the only year it is confirmed for the city.

Eight of the top 10 men and women worldwide are in Bendigo for the tournament, which finishes on Sunday.

Tournament Director Daniel O’Neill said Bendigo was the perfect venue for play, both in terms of the facility as well as preparation for the players as they head towards the first grand slam of the year in Melbourne.

“You’re going to see the best wheelchair tennis players in the world here this week, so there will be some fantastic tennis played,” he said.

“It’s obviously easily accessible for the players, and four full size ITF size courts, which are perfect for this type of event.”

Yesterday’s action included Australian and world quad number one Dylan Alcott taking to the court in the doubles.