BENDIGO'S status as the home of tennis in regional Victoria has been further enhanced by the announcement a Tennis Victoria Premier League team will be based in the city.
For the first time in the competition's history, a Country All-Stars squad will compete alongside high-profile metropolitan clubs in Victoria's elite team tennis league.
Bendigo tennis products Curt Garwood, Aiden Fitzgerald and Adam Fleming have been selected in the Country All-Stars squad and will get the opportunity to play against players of the calibre of former Australian Davis Cup player Peter Luczak.
The Premier League seasons runs from March 1 through to mid-April.
The seven-team men's competition is made up of the Country All-Stars, MCC (where Luczak will play), Royal South Yarra, Kooyong, Waverly, Grace Park and Dingley.
Each club hosts one super round where all clubs compete. Bendigo is expected to host its super round on Sunday, March 24.
"The All-Stars add a new dimension to this competition and ensure that country players have the opportunity to play in a high level competition and spectators have the chance to watch some great tennis without travelling to the city," said Tennis Victoria's competitions manager Jeff Downes.
"The All-Stars will have some strong competition from the other clubs, I believe this is the strongest field ever seen in the Premier League competition."
Bendigo tennis ace Eliza Long will play for MCC in the women's Premier League. No women's matches will be played in Bendigo.
Bendigo was selected to host the squad on the back of its successful staging of its annual Pro Tour tournament and last year's junior Davis Cup.