LTA announces second year of ATP Challenger in Scotland
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The LTA has announced the return of its ATP Challenger event to Glasgow, meaning Scotland will play host to a second professional tennis tournament this year.
Returning to Scotstoun Sports Campus with both singles and doubles draws taking place from 16-22 September, the tournament builds on the success of last year’s inaugural event – having worked with Event Scotland – which saw matches played out in front of almost 3,200 fans during the week.
In developing the event for 2019, the LTA has worked in close partnership with Jamie Murray over the course of several months. The collaboration has meant Murray’s experience on the pro circuit can be combined with the LTA’s expertise in delivering world-class events to ensure the tournament excels in meeting the needs of both the players on court and the fans in the stands. Spectators will also get the chance to see Murray in action as he competes in the doubles draw.
The tournament is being staged by the LTA in partnership with Glasgow Life, Glasgow City Council and Tennis Scotland as the city continues to add to its established reputation as a host of major international sporting events – currently ranked among the top five sporting cities in the world. Tennis Scotland will support the operational delivery of the Glasgow ATP Challenger, which follows on from the GB Pro-Series event played in the city in February.
Both events are part of the new and expanded international calendar of tournaments being staged by the LTA in Britain this year, providing a showcase for tennis outside of the traditional summer grass court season and opening up the sport to more fans around the country. The move aligns with the LTA’s new long-term Performance Strategy, aiding the development of British players by providing more opportunities for them to compete, earn world ranking points and win prize money in this country.
The return of the Challenger event to Glasgow builds on the LTA’s successful track record of hosting events in the city. Nearly two-thirds of Great Britain’s home Davis Cup ties over the last decade have been staged there, including the unforgettable semi-finals of 2015 and 2016, making it the home of some of the most memorable moments in the recent history of British tennis.
The event won’t just be about the opportunity to enjoy watching top class British and international players up close. As with previous events in the city, the LTA and Tennis Scotland are ensuring Scottish fans inspired by the on court action will have the chance to pick up a racket and play for themselves.
At last year’s Challenger event, hundreds of people from the Glasgow area, from six year olds to 76 year olds, took part in mini tennis and other formats of the game between matches, activity co-ordinated by Tennis Scotland and Glasgow Life. Using elite performances – whether at the ATP Challenger in Scotland in September or at the Fed Cup this weekend in East London – to inspire more fans to try the sport for the first time or start playing again, is all part of the LTA’s work to achieve its ambition of opening tennis up to a wider audience all year round.
Offering prize money totalling $60,000, the event will see players compete for what will be the joint largest prize fund in the country outside of the summer grass court events.
Who said what?
LTA Chief Executive Scott Lloyd said:
“Staging tournaments like this means we can provide our pipeline of talented, young British players with more opportunities to compete at home. We also know that giving fans the chance to enjoy thrilling tennis up close can inspire them to play. Wimbledon is a fantastic showcase for the sport, but tennis doesn’t start and stop in July. Events like our ATP Challenger in Scotland in September help us to keep tennis front of mind all year round. Our aim is to open tennis up to anyone with an interest in it and we’re delighted to be working with Jamie Murray to ensure this year’s Challenger is an even greater success for the players and fans alike.”
Jamie Murray, 2015 Davis Cup champion and six-time Grand Slam doubles winner, said:
“Some of the best memories of my career have been playing Davis Cup ties at home and I am delighted to be working with the LTA and Glasgow Life on the planning and delivery of an ATP Challenger in Scotland later this year. Last year’s inaugural event was a fantastic success with over three thousand fans coming along to support all the British and international players. We hope to make this year’s tournament more successful, providing a platform to inspire more young people in Scotland to take up our sport. I look forward to seeing everyone again in September.”
Councillor David McDonald, Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow Life, said:
“We’re delighted to see the return of the Glasgow Trophy ATP Challenger Tour to Scotstoun. Last year’s event was a fantastic success, and working with the LTA and Jamie Murray to bring this back to Glasgow means we know fans are in for another treat. Glasgow is among the top five sporting cities in the world, and our city is looking forward to welcoming back athletes and tennis fans to Scotstoun in September for what’s sure to be some fierce and entertaining competition.”
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