By Martyn Herman
LONDON (Reuters) – The 2021 Davis Cup Finals will likely be held over 11 days relatively than seven and can nearly definitely be staged throughout three cities, the Worldwide Tennis Federation (ITF) confirmed on Monday.
The modifications proposed by the ITF’s occasion associate Kosmos Tennis, the Spanish-based funding agency who’re pumping in $3 billion over 25 years, had been agreed by the ITF Board.
This yr’s occasion is scheduled for Nov 25-Dec 5.
The ITF confirmed that two extra European cities are being sought to share the staging of the 2021 Finals with Madrid which hosted the primary version of the revamped competitors in 2019.
One other change is to have the Finals trimmed from 18 to 16 groups from 2022.
“We wish to make it higher for the gamers, higher for the followers and higher for the groups,” Kris Dent, ITF Senior Govt Director, Skilled Tennis, informed Reuters.
“Individuals love the concept of the most effective groups on the earth coming collectively for one occasion, however seven days, particularly the day after the ATP Finals, it is simply not potential so these modifications we predict will make a terrific competitors even higher.”
The 121-year-old males’s staff occasion underwent a significant revamp in 2019 with the season-long residence and away tie format changed by a soccer World Cup-type format with the highest 18 nations battling for the title at Madrid’s Caja Magica in November.
Whereas there was reward for the brand new occasion which ended with Rafa Nadal main Spain to victory over Canada within the ultimate, the logistics of enjoying 25 ties, every consisting of two singles and a doubles, on three courts in seven days was difficult.
One tie between the USA and Italy ended at 4am, native time.
“We consider we did a terrific occasion in 2019 however for certain there have been issues to enhance, just like the scheduling and the attendances within the stands,” Davis Cup Finals Match Director Albert Costa informed Reuters.
“With the brand new format and the brand new challenge we’ve got now I consider we’ll remedy all these issues. Eleven days is best for the gamers as a result of you’ll be able to’t play 5 ties in seven days.”
A ten-week bidding course of opened on Monday for European cities eager to affix Madrid in internet hosting the 2021 Finals.
Turin, the brand new host of the ATP Finals, could be a logical choice whereas London is one other potential co-host.
The 2 further cities would every host two group levels and one quarter-final every, with Madrid internet hosting two group levels, two quarter-finals, the semi-finals and the ultimate.
“Gamers we’ve got spoken to over the previous couple of days alone have proven actual pleasure at with the ability to add one other couple of cities, making it much more a World Cup of tennis,” Dent stated.
“We’re quietly assured we’ll get a very good present of curiosity.”
A ultimate determination is predicted by March primarily based on the internet hosting and COVID-19 contingency proposals obtained from bidders.
Final yr’s occasion was postponed due to the pandemic.
Costa believes three cities would allow extra ‘residence’ followers — a conventional facet of the Davis Cup.
“Three host nations means a wider viewers and extra followers will be capable to see their gamers at residence and that is one thing that gamers like and followers like,” the Spaniard stated.
The discount to 16 nations for the Finals from 2022 would additionally make for a ‘cleaner’ format, says Costa, with 4 teams of 4 and the highest two progressing to the quarter-finals.
Twelve of the 16 nations would come by means of the qualifying ties held earlier within the yr, with two ITF wildcards and the winners and runners-up from the 2021 occasion.