Five-plus months before Tennis in the Land touched down in the Flats, Kyle Ross approached Case Western Reserve University about a unique idea.
Rather than just purchasing “something off the shelf,” Ross, the tournament director for the Women’s Tennis Association event, asked Case men’s tennis coach Todd Wojtkowski if he thought the school’s engineering department could create custom umpire chairs.
Cleveland-based Topnotch Management, which owns the first-year WTA event, has what Ross describes as a “great relationship” with the university, thanks in part to the Cleveland Open. The Cleveland Open, also owned by Topnotch, is a 3-year-old tournament that is part of the ATP Challenger Tour.
Ross told Crain’s he first discussed the possibility with Wojtkowski in March. A couple months later, the Case School of Engineering went to work. The university said a kickoff meeting for the…