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Tennis Stars Launch “Aces for Homes’’ Tsunami Relief Program* * * * *Women’s Tour Sponsors Donate €10 for Every Ace

June 13, 2005



EASTBOURNE, UK, 13th June 2005: – Amelie Mauresmo and other stars from the Sony Ericsson Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Tour have kicked off a year-long initiative to raise at least €100,000 (US$121,000) to build Habitat homes for tsunami victims in India’s Chennai region.

Through the “Aces for Homes’’ program, the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour and Whirlpool, the Tour’s premier European sponsor, will donate €10 (US$12) for every ace hit by a Tour player.

The program will start with The Hastings Direct International Championships and run through to next year’s tournament, encompassing 64 events in 33 countries worldwide.

“It is critical that we do not let the terrible plight of tsunami victims fade from our daily consciousness,’’ said tennis star Amelie Mauresmo, the Tour’s official ambassador to Habitat for Humanity.

“Women’s tennis has many close ties to the people in those regions,” she added, “and we are determined not to let them down at a time when they still need us the most.’’



The “Aces for Homes’’ program adds to Whirlpool’s commitment to tsunami relief efforts and Habitat for Humanity. Whirlpool has supported Habitat since 1999 and currently partners with Habitat in 18 countries around the world.

This support goes beyond financial donations and includes appliance donations to Habitat homes and direct involvement of Whirlpool employees in building homes.

Since the tsunami disaster, Whirlpool employees from all parts of its global operations have joined in raising money for the relief efforts, including at Whirlpool’s Pondicherry facility, located in an area in India hit hard by the tsunami.

The “Aces for Homes’’ program also continues the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour’s series of initiatives aimed at benefiting tsunami victims.

Earlier this year, the Tour collected autographed tennis rackets from the game’s 14 former No. 1-ranked players, including Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Steffi Graf, Monica Seles, Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova, for an auction that will benefit tsunami victims.

During the Proximus Diamond Games in Antwerp, Belgium and the Volvo Women’s Open in Pattaya City, Thailand several months ago, several star players such as Maria Sharapova, Venus Williams, Kim Clijsters and Amelie Mauresmo, donated signed tennis outfits, rackets and other items that were auctioned with the proceeds going to tsunami relief funds.

And in January, players collected donations from fans at various tournaments in Australia that went to tsunami relief funds.