Felix Auger-Aliassime and Simona Halep to star in debut Adelaide events January 2020
Breakthrough Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime will take his place next January in the debut edition of a new event in Adelaide, which came to life as a result of the summer shakeup of the pre-Australian Open calendar.
With Brisbane and Sydney tournament dead and buried along with Perth’s wildly popular Hopman Cup, the ATP needed to scratch together some legit competition to counterbalance the $15 million ATP Cup team tournament which tops the tennis agenda in the new year.
Adelaide, which produced Lleyton Hewitt, uber-coach Darren Cahill and doubles ace Mark Woodforde, managed to grab onto some of the spoils, landing what will launch as a dual ATP-WTA event from January 12-18.
Timing might not be ideal for catching the biggest names in the sport as most do not play the week prior to a Grand Slam due not in the least part to sponsor commitments such as clinics, store openings and meet-and-greets with fans.
Nevertheless, Adelaide officials are looking forward to showing off improvements to Memorial Drive, which will now boast a sail-like roof covering to hopefully ward off some of the worst of he heat in one of Australia’s most sizzling cities.
The 20th-ranked FAA remains the youngest player in the ranking Top 20 at age 19 and owns a Top 10 career victory after beating No. 7 Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The youngster has never been to Adelaide, which at hosted an ATP hardcourt stop two decades ago.
“I am really looking forward to playing in Adelaide in January,” he said. “I’ve always enjoyed visiting Australia, but I haven’t been to Adelaide before; I”m thrilled to be playing the first Adelaide International.”
The Canadian said he will be ready for the summer heat which can often top 40 Celsius in the South Australian capital.
“I have heard that the climate is very similar to Melbourne, so I think that this tournament will be the perfect preparation for the Australian Open.”
The women’s side of the new field will featuring reigning Wimbledon champion Simona Halep, set to resume her successful coaching arrangement with local son Cahill in 2020, who took this season off to be with his family.
Workers are currently labouring flat-out to get the new sunroof ready over the stadium which sits adjacent to the famed cricket Oval.
Written by Bill Scott for Grandslamtennis.online. To read more visit grandslamtennis.online