World No.1 Rafael Nadal is set to expand his Spanish-based tennis academy abroad for the first time after revealing plans for a new venue in Mexico.
The Rafael Nadal Tennis academy is based in Nadal’s birthplace of Manacor. The state of the art venue features 25 tennis courts, a fitness centre and two swimming pools. Nadal, his uncle Tony, former world No.10 Carlos Costa and 1998 French Open champion Carlos Moya are all on the board of directors.
Celebrating the second birthday of the academy this week, it has been confirmed that the Mexican city of Cancun will host the second Nadal academy in the world. The exact location of the venue is Costa Mujeres, which is to the north of Cancun. It will be part of the facilities for two new hotels that will be opened to the public next week. They are the TRS Coral Hotel and Grand Palladium Costa Mujeres Resort & Spa.
“One of the objectives we have always had is the expansion of the Academy. It also fills us with satisfaction to be able to announce the first expansion outside of Manacor.” Nadal said in a statement.
“The first expansion is going to be in Mexico in Costa Mujeres and for us it is a great motivation and a great opportunity.” He later added.
The new facility will feature eight clay tennis courts, a 7-a-side football pitch, a Padel court, a sports shop, a stringing service and a bar-café. There will also be a Rafael Nadal museum featuring exhibits from the career of the 11-time French Open champion. A variety of training programmes aimed at both children and adults will be on offer.
Supporting the expansion abroad will be the Palladium Hotel Group, who has a deal with the Nadal academy. Palladium currently employs more than 10,000 people worldwide. The company has numerous hotels located across central and southern America as well as Spain.
“The alliance with the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar is a source of great pride for the Palladium Hotel Group, as it allows us to offer both visitors and residents of the area first-class sports facilities, which fit perfectly with the values that run through all of our products, such as high quality and healthy living.” Company CEO Abel Matutes Prats said.
The new venue will be officially opened next month. It is unknown if Nadal will be present at the opening ceremony. The Spaniard is currently absent from the tour due to a knee injury, but is schedule to return to action at next week’s Paris Masters.
Danil Medvedev beats Egor Gerasimov in St. Petersburg to reach his fifth consecutive final
Danil Medvedev edged past Belarusian qualifier Egor Gerasimov 7-5 7-5 in 91 minutes to reach the final at the St. Petersburg Open.
Medvedev broke serve in the 11th game to win the opening set 7-5. After a trade of breaks in the seventh and eighth games of the second set, Medvedev broke for the second time in the 11th game and served out the second set 7-5 at deuce.
The 23-year-old Russian player has become the first player since Novak Djokovic in 2018 to reach five conscutive finals. This summer he won his maiden Masters 1000 title in Cincinnati and finished runner-up to Nick Kyrgios in Washington and to Rafael Nadal in Montreal and at the US Open.
Medvedev will be bidding to become the first Russian player to win the St. Petersburg Open since Mi
“I am extremely happy to be in my first final in my home country. I came here to win the tournament, that’s what I am doing. I am looking forward to the final. Tough opponent, and hopefully a great fight tomorrow”, said Medvedev.
Medvedev set up a final against Borna Coric, who came back from one set down to beat Joao Sousa 3-6 7-6 (7-5) 6-1. The young Croatian player has reached his first final since losing to Novak Djokovic in Shanghai in October 2018.
Sousa won the opening set 6-3 with his only break in in the fourth game. The Portuguese player saved two breaks in the second and tenth games. Coric fended off two break points to hold his serve after three deuces. Coric took the 7-5 edge in the tie-break. Coric broke three times in the first, fifth and seventh games to win the third set 6-1.
Daniil Medvedev Scores Sponsorship Deal With BMW
The 23-year-old is set to attend a series of activities organised by the car manufacturer over the coming months.
Daniil Medvedev’s recent surge in success on the tour seems to be also boosting his profile away from the court after he teamed up with car manufacturer BMW.
The world No.4 will take part in a series of activities involving the Russian branch of the BMW company in both his home country and abroad. A contract was signed earlier this week following a meeting in St Petersburg, where Medvedev is playing his latest competition on the ATP Tour. He has agreed to feature in a series of campaigns promoting the BMW M, which specialises in sports cars. No financial details of the contract have been published.
“BMW M is BMW’s fastest, most powerful and most innovative sports car. And Daniil Medvedev is the brightest and most titled Russian tennis player right now.” The director general of BMW Russia, Stefan Teuchert, said in a statement.
“On the tennis court, Medvedev demonstrates qualities typical of BMW sports cars – speed, power, intelligence and a strong character. We are glad that we managed to agree on cooperation, and we look forward to future joint projects.”
23-year-old Medvedev has triggered a surge of interest in him following his summer breakthrough. Prior to the final grand slam of the season, he reached three consecutive finals in Washington, Canada and Cincinnati. Becoming only the third man in history to do after Ivan Lendl and Andre Agassi. It was in Cincinnati where he won his first Masters title. Then at the US Open, Medvedev finished runner-up to Rafael Nadal after contesting a five-set epic against the Spaniard.
Medvedev will be hoping to continue his surge of form this week at the St Petersburg Open where he is the top seed. He is yet to contest an ATP final on Russian territory. However, the rising star has stated that his recent surge in success has given him extra belief on the tour.
“I have become convinced: when I am in good shape, I can beat anyone, or at least give a fight. It is most important. I seemed to know this before, but was not completely sure. Now I know this for sure.” Medvedev said during an interview with Sport Express.
According to the ATP, Medvedev has been the most successful player in indoor tournaments on the Tour within the past 52 weeks. Claiming two trophies and winning 22 matches overall. Giving him a 0.786 winning percentage.
He will open up his campaign in St Petersburg on Thursday against compatriot Evgeny Donskoy.
Pre-Wimbledon Shake-Up Sees Birmingham Lose Premier Status And Mallorca Gain Men’s Tournament
Changes have been made to the grass-court season from 2020 onwards.
A Premier grass-court women’s event have been moved to another country following changes made to the schedule of tournaments leading up to Wimbledon.
The Birmingham International, which is the only woman’s-only event held in the UK, has had their status reduced. Going from Premier level to international and subsequently dropping down from offering $1 million to $250,000 in prize money. The move comes after organisers of the event admitted they have found it financially tough to maintain the event and make a profit. Birmingham had held a premier status since 2014 with past winners including Ash Barty, Petra Kvitova and Angelique Kerber.
Instead the German capital of Berlin will host a new Premier event. It will take place at the Lawn Tennis Turnier Club Rot-Weiß (LTTC), which once held the German Open between 1979-2008. A clay-court tournament that was also part of the WTA Tour. However, this time round the surface will be grass. In a statement published by the LTTC, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has agreed to be a patron for the new event and there will some redevelopment of the venue in the coming months.
“We are looking forward to welcoming the absolute world-class women’s tennis on the grounds of the LTTC “Rot-Weiß” In the coming summer from 15 to 21 June 2020! Twelve years after the last German Open, our club will live up to many expectations with this worldwide international tournament.” A press release reads.
There have also been proposals for a separate WTA tournament to take place in Germany the week after Berlin in Bad Homburg. The event would replace the Istanbul Open, however, it is still subject to approval from the WTA board.
On the ATP Tour, there has been a change to one of the events taking place during the week before Wimbledon. Mallorca will now hold a 250 tournament instead of Antalya. Raising speculation about if Rafael Nadal could play in the event in the future. Nadal hasn’t played a grass-court event outside of Wimbledon since 2015, but lives in the Balearic Island.
“A strong and successful grass court season is absolutely critical to the future of grass court tennis and thus the future success of The Championships.” The chairman of the AELTC, Philip Brook, said in a statement.
“Having worked to expand the grass court season to be a meaningful gap between Roland-Garros and Wimbledon, we are pleased to be making these significant further investments into ensuring that quality grass court tournaments can be provided at all levels of the professional game for the best interests of the players and the broader tennis family.”
The 2020 grass swing of the tour will get underway during the week commencing June 8th.
Week 1: Nottingham (WTA International), S’Hertogenbosch (ATP 250/WTA International), Stuttgart (ATP 250)
Week 2: Berlin (WTA Premier), Birmingham (WTA International), Queen’s (ATP 500), Halle (ATP 500)
Week 3: Mallorca (ATP 250), Eastbourne (WTA Premier) – TBC: Bad Homburg (WTA International)
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