The president of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) has received a big boost ahead of his election on Friday after the governing body of British tennis endorsed him for a second term.
David Haggerty is facing opposition from three other candidates as he bid to keep hold of his current position, which he has held since September 2015. The American has managed to help boost the financial side of the organisation during his tenure. However, he has been criticised for a series of controversies.
Haggerty was one of the key people behind the revamp of the Davis Cup, which has split opinion in the sport. Critics have said that the changes are too radical and kills the tradition of the 119-year-old competition. From this year 18 teams will compete in a week-long final held in a neutral location. The key backers of the changes are investment company Kosmos, which was founded by Gerald Pique. Another controversy was the implementation and subsequent removal of the ITF transition Tour within a year following mass protest by players who said they were worse off.
“We are deeply concerned about the governance of the sport, the role of the ITF in that and a number of recent decisions.” The LTA said in a statement published by metro.co.uk.
“The LTA Board had lengthy discussions about the forthcoming ITF Presidential vote and we do not believe that now is the right time for a radical change in regime.
“We will, however be holding whichever candidate becomes President of the ITF to account on a number of areas.”
The support from the British contingent is one that some find baffling. Given the fact they have voiced concerns about the governance of the ITF and still backs its leader. They were also one of the most notable tennis bodies to not back changes to the Davis Cup in a key ITF vote.
How the LTA votes on Friday is crucial for all candidates. They are one of the five nations that has a total of 12 votes allocated to them. Along with America, Australia, France and Germany. It is expected the America will also back Haggerty given that he is from the country.
The biggest threat to Haggerty’s reign is Ireland’s Dave Miley. Whose presidential campaign has reportedly seen him to visit 70 countries. Miley was a vocal critic of the Transition Tour and reform of the ITF.
“I believe tennis is very fragmented at the moment and is not very healthy. The ITF has a perception that it is quite weak and I want to change that.” Miley said during the launch of his candidacy earlier this year.
“My manifesto is underpinned by two things. What’s good for tennis and what is good for the nations of the ITF.”
The 2019 ITF presidential election will take place on Friday. Also entered in the race is Anil Khanna (India) Ivo Kaderka (Czech Republic). Candidates require more than 50% of the vote to be elected.
Roger Federer Cast Doubt On Return To Davis Cup
The Swiss Maestro addresses his future in the team competition.
20-time grand slam champion Roger Federer has admitted that there is a chance that he may not play in the Davis Cup again before he retires from the sport.
The former world No.1 hasn’t played in the team competition since 2015. This year the event has undergone a major revamp with the help of financial backing from investment company Kosmos. In November 18 teams will travel to Madrid and play in a week-long round-robin format. Removing the tradition of home and away ties. Both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have confirmed they will be playing in the event.
One of the most notable absentees from the event will be Federer as Switzerland hasn’t qualified for the finals. However, the 38-year-old has in the past voiced his concerns over Gerald Pique’s involvement. Pique is the founder of Kosmos.
“I put in a lot of energy into the Davis Cup over the years.” Federer told reporters in Shanghai.
“I played a lot of matches. It’s been a lot of work. Winning (the title) in 2014 was a dream come true for Stan and me and the team, and Rosset, even though he was not on the team, he thought it was the greatest thing ever, and it was.”
Federer has represented his country in 27 Davis ties during his career and has won 52 out of 70 matches played. He has won more matches in the competition than any other player from his country. Whilst boasting a strong record, Federer admits that he is uncertain about playing in the event again.
“I have not officially retired from the Davis Cup, so that means I don’t know what to tell you, maybe, but obviously more likely no than yes, as I’m getting older and I have other things I would like to also do and go to places I have never played before.” Federer replied when asked about his future in the Davis Cup.
“It’s one thing and then having the four children and the wife is another. I just can’t be everywhere. I always said when you play the Davis Cup you have to miss out on Masters 1000. Is that worth the give? Not always. Not for me anyway.”
In recent years Federer has applied his focus to another team event – the Laver Cup, which he co-founded. From 2020 there will be three team tournaments taking place on the men’s tour every year due to the revival in the ATP Cup in January.
“Federer was the only player reluctant to play this new Davis Cup.” Pique told Spanish TV programme e ’El Hormiguero’.
“He has the Laver Cup too and, whatever you say, there is bound to be some competition.
“It is not easy. We are there working and I think that in the end we will understand each other.”
The Davis Cup finals will get underway on November 18th at the Caja Magica, which is the venue of the Madrid Open. Meanwhile, at the same time Federer will be going on a tour of South America where he will play a series of exhibition matches. Alexander Zverev and Juan Martin del Potro will join him on parts of the tour.
ITF President Confirms Hopman Cup Will Return In 2021. But How Will It Work?
The Hopman Cup is set to make a re-entry into the tennis calendar in 2021. “I can confirm we have interest from every continent” says Haggerty, but it seems unlikely the ITF will be able to find a new date to preserve the event’s original appeal
The Hopman Cup, the mixed-gender competition that was one of the victims of the ATP Cup, the newly-created team competition organized by the ATP and Tennis Australia, is set to make a return during the 2021 season.
The recently re-elected President of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) David Haggerty has confirmed during a phone interview with Reuters that plans are being made for a return of the competition during the next season: “Our plan is to re-introduce it for 2021. We don’t have plans for the Hopman Cup in 2020 but we are going out to the market for expressions of interest and we have already had quite a few enquiries.”
Of course, the original slot during the first week of January is no longer available, since it is now occupied by the ATP Cup, which will see its first edition take place between 3rd and 12th January 2020 in three Australian cities including Perth, Western Australia, that has hosted the competition since the beginning in 1989. That was really an ideal time of the year for such an event, with most players going to Australia after the winter training block and looking to play a few matches before the first Slam of the year a couple of weeks later in Melbourne.
“It could really be anywhere in the world and any time in the calendar,” confirmed Haggerty, who however failed to mention that it will be far from easy to find a more suitable slot in the ATP and WTA calendars to make the competition palatable for the big names that have played at the RAC Arena in Perth during the past editions. For example, last January Switzerland played the United States during a Round Robin tie, that traditionally consisted of one men’s singles, one women’s singles and a final mixed doubles; on that occasion the Hopman Cup showcased arguably the two most successful players of all times, Roger Federer and Serena Williams, in a mixed doubles match that represented an unparalleled promotional opportunity for tennis.
Top players nowadays are extremely careful with their scheduling and the presence of these marquee names can only be assured if the date of the competition does not interfere with their plans to perform at their best at Grand Slam events.
“The reason to do the expressions of interest is really to get the feedback from the nations and cities that have an interest and see what their proposal would be,” Haggerty added, “and I can confirm we have interest from every continent.”
It is reassuring to hear the ITF President so engaged in bringing back this very popular competition, but the position in the calendar is really crucial to the success and the livelihood of these events, and the ITF has very little clout to shuffle events around and make room for this “prodigal son”. Let’s not forget that the new multi-million dollar Davis Cup Finals, scheduled to take place in Madrid next month for the first time in its highly controversial new formula, is going to see its opening match start just a few hours after the end of the Nitto ATP Finals in London, in a scheduling jam that is likely to cost the participation of some of the big names to the kermesse at the Caja Magica. But the ITF only had that week available, all negotiations with the ATP were unfruitful and it was forced to hold its flagship event right at the end of the season when most players are exhausted and longing for a well-deserved break at the Maldives before the season starts again in Australia.
If the ITF couldn’t get a more suitable date in the calendar for its main event, what are the chances they will be able to get a decent slot for the Hopman Cup, a competition with far less tradition and that will require negotiations not only with the ATP but also with the WTA?
David Haggerty Elected ITF President For Second Term
The American has seen off opposition from three other candidates.
The International Tennis Federation will be under the control of David Haggerty for at least the next four years after he secured a resounding win in the presidential election on Friday.
Haggerty, who has been the head of the organisation since 2015, was reappointed after winning 60.5% of votes during the first round of voting in Lisbon, Portugal. Under ITF rules, candidates need to secure a minimum of 50% in order to be appointed president. The details of which countries voted for or against Haggerty are anonymous. Although both the UK and America have confirmed their support. Two of the five countries that have 12 votes each.
The American faced opposition from three other candidates. One of which was Ireland’s Dave Miley, who has been a vocal critic of Haggerty’s reign. He has previously outlined his campaign during an interview with Ubitennis. Miley managed to get just 46 votes (10.8%) and finished in third position. Ahead of him was India’s Anil Khanna (93 votes). Meanwhile, Czech Republic’s Ivo Kaderka was the worst performing of the candidates with only 7% support.
“I appreciate your support,” Haggerty said following the results.
“I would also like to congratulate Anil, Ivo and David for their hard work in the election.
“Thank you very much.”
During his first tenure as ITF president, Haggerty has been the driving force behind the revamp of the Davis Cup. This November will be the first time in history where the finals will feature 18 teams playing over a week in a round-robin format. Similar to that of the football world cup. Similar changes are set to be made to the Fed Cup next year. Unlike the Davis Cup, the Fed Cup changes will be made without an official ITF vote taking place.
There has also been controversy with the implementation and subsequent removal of the ITF Transition Tour. A petition was launched by players over the tour after many complained that they were worse off. The tour saw the introduction of a separate ranking system and a reduction in the number of places for qualifying events. Both of which have now been scrapped.
In his 2019 manifesto, Haggerty has pledged to review the governance of the organisation. An issue that has also been previously raised by one of his backers, the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA). He has also pledged to increase worldwide development funding by 50% per year. Raising the amount from $12 million to $18 million.
Haggerty will remain in his role until at least 2023.
Kim Clijsters’ Return To Tennis Will Be ‘A Big Challenge,’ Warns Tennis Legend Graf
Dominic Thiem and Jannik Sinner grab the headlines in Vienna
Taylor Fritz upsets Alexander Zverev in Basel first round
Stan Wawrinka Explains ATP Cup Absence And Olympics Situation Ahead Of Basel
Kiki Bertens, Aryna Sabalenka Victorious On Opening Day Of Elite Trophy
Three Things To Know About Rafael Nadal’s Wedding
‘I Was Just Trying To Fight’ – Andy Murray Clinches Biggest Win Of 2019 At China Open
Former Tennis Star Tatiana Golovin Set To Play First Match Since 2008
Behave Or Get Suspended – ATP Issues Six-Month Ultimatum To Nick Kyrgios
Former Top 10 Star Was Drunk During Grand Slam Final, Claims Banned Tennis Player
(VIDEO) Roger Federer, Alexander Zverev Guide Europe To Laver Cup Glory
(VIDEO) US Open Day 14: Rafael Nadal Ends The Tournament With An Extraordinary Win
(VIDEO) US Open Day 12: Bianca Andreescu Is The Queen Of New York
(VIDEO) US Open Day 12: Daniil Medvedev Stands In The Way Of Nadal’s 19th Grand Slam Title
(VIDEO) US Open Day 11: Why Bianca Andreescu Toppling Williams Will Not Be A Shock
Latest news3 days ago
Roger Federer Speaks Out On Nadal’s Wedding Ahead Of Basel Campaign
Latest news3 days ago
Juan Mata On Why The Rivalry Between Rafael Nadal And Roger Federer Is Special
Focus3 days ago
Denis Shapovalov claims his first career title in Stockholm
ATP3 days ago
Andy Murray Fights Back In Epic To Win First ATP Title Since Surgery In Antwerp
Focus2 days ago
Jelena Ostapenko lifts her first title since 2017 in Luxembourg
Hot Topics1 day ago
Roger Federer Hails Andy Murray’s Comeback Triumph
ATP3 days ago
Tennis Players Blasts ‘Unfair’ ATP Cup That Could Leave Some Worse Off
Focus3 days ago
Andrey Rublev lifts his first title in Moscow on his 22nd birthday