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IMG gives Bradenton world-class status

Tennis great Andre Agassi has called it home. So has Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova. Paula Creamer and Landon Donovan went to school there. Kobe Bryant and Derek Jeter have been in for tune-ups. Future NFL and NBA hopefuls flock there for training sessions designed to help them move up the draft boards. Olympic teams, like U.S. Soccer, use it as a base for pretournament training.

>> Dominic Servi, of the U-23 National soccer team, drills with the team at IMG. TIFFANY TOMPKINS-CONDIE/ttompkins@bradenton.com

>> Gastao Elias competes during the final round of the Eddie Herr tennis tournament at IMG Academies in Bradenton. Ð BRIAN BLANCO/bblanco@bradenton.com

It may be the most famous place in Bradenton, but the walled complex is not so much a part of the city as an island within it, a place where Monica Seles or Serena Williams can train in relative peace and quiet alongside kids who hope to follow in their footsteps.

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