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Serena and Venus Return to Championship Kastles' Lineup

Howard University Sports | 2/21/2012, 1:30 p.m.

The Washington Kastles are pleased to announce that Serena and Venus Williams will return to D.C. in 2012 to lead the defending champion Washington Kastles after both were chosen in today's World TeamTennis (WTT) Marquee Player Draft.

Serena and Venus were on the 2011 Kastles' squad that captured the King Trophy and finished 16-0, becoming the first team in the league's 36-year history to complete a perfect season. This will be Serena's fifth consecutive season with the Kastles. Older sister Venus will be returning for her third year with the team.

Together, they have proven a dynamic duo in World TeamTennis and just as effective on the WTA Tour, combining to win 48 Grand Slam titles in singles, doubles and mixed doubles. Since a 17-year-old Venus made a run to the 1997 US Open singles final, a Williams sister has played in a Grand Slam championship match in each of the last 15 years.

"We are thrilled to have Serena and Venus back in Washington this summer," said team owner Mark Ein. "With the rest of our core team expected to return, we believe we are once again positioned to win the WTT title."

Ein added: "Our fans have always supported us like no other team in the league and we have always been committed to bring the best players in the world to represent our city. We can't wait for the 2012 title defense to begin."

Reigning WTT Coach of the Year Murphy Jensen returns to the Kastles for a fourth straight season. The charismatic coach, himself a former French Open doubles champion, is thrilled that Serena and Venus are returning to the team.

"Since I started coaching the Kastles in 2009, we've never lost with Venus or Serena in our lineup," said Jensen. "After going 16-0 last season, the sky's the limit for the Kastles in 2012."

The 2012 WTT season will run from July 9-28, with specific dates, times and opponents for the Kastles expected to be released by the league in early March. The rest of the Kastles roster will be determined during the WTT Roster Player Draft March 13.