Tennis-Grand Slam Board says safeguarding Davis Cup is a priority
All four tennis Grand Slams will make it a priority to safeguard the Davis Cup men's team tournament, the governing body of the sport's most prestigious events said on Friday, two weeks after the ITF's partnership with investment group Kosmos ended.
All four tennis Grand Slams will make it a priority to safeguard the Davis Cup men's team tournament, the governing body of the sport's most prestigious events said on Friday, two weeks after the ITF's partnership with investment group Kosmos ended. The International Tennis Federation said on Jan. 12 that its partnership with former Barcelona soccer player Gerard Pique's Kosmos was ending five years into a 25-year, $3 billion agreement.
That deal was unveiled in 2018 amid much fanfare over promises to deliver "long-term benefits" for fans and all stakeholders of the game. The ITF, the sport's governing body, added that it had financial contingencies in place and would operate the 2023 Davis Cup qualifiers and finals as scheduled, with the Final 8 taking place in Malaga, Spain, in November.
"Protecting the heritage of the sport and safeguarding major teams competitions such as the Davis Cup and Billie Jean King Cup is a priority for the global tennis community and will appropriately get the Grand Slams' full attention," the Grand Slam board said in a statement. The board added that the Grand Slam tournaments were united in their support for the Davis Cup "recognising its historical significance and important role in growing engagement in our sport around the world."
"We believe there is an opportunity to engage in further discussions with the ITF and ATP regarding the future of the Davis Cup competition with the ambition of seeing it restored to a premier event with an optimal format and place in the calendar that benefits players, fans and the sport overall." The ITF welcomed the statement and said it was looking forward to "leading further positive conversations" with the Grand Slam Board and the ATP in the build-up to this year's Davis Cup.
"We are excited for another successful edition of the Davis Cup in 2023 and look forward to discussions to continue the future growth of the competition," the governing body added. The agreement with Kosmos had led to the revamp of the men's team competition, which was founded in 1900.
The usual home-and-away ties played over a few weekends during the course of the year were scrapped. That format was replaced in 2019 with just one home-and-away round of ties that was followed by 18-teams competing in one city for a week-long climax to the season.
After the 2020 edition was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 finale was held across 11 days in three cities -- Madrid, Turin and Innsbruck. The format was tweaked again last year, when teams competed in a group stage in September, with the top eight reaching the finals.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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