Dubai’s inaugural tennis league attracts Djokovic and Swiatek to compete in new format
Dubai has been announced as the first host of the new World Tennis League (WTL) series, an event featuring leading stars such as Novak Djokovic and Iga Swiatek that promises to create a “new era” for the sport.
Set to debut at Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena from 19th to 24th December, the team-based format will feature two-set matches played across singles and mixed doubles, plus a 10-point tie-breaker set to decide the final outcome if needed.
Each evening’s play will be followed by a concert featuring what organisers claim will be top artists from around the globe with Dutch DJs, Tiësto and Armin Van Buuren, the first acts to be announced.
Introducing the series, WTL Chairman, Rajesh Banga stated “the World Tennis League will be an event like no other. It brings a unique and engaging new format to the game of tennis, offering a spectacular mix of sport and entertainment together.
“We can’t wait to welcome fans from around the globe for this momentous event that hails a new era for tennis.”
Novak Djokovic heads the men's field, with world number one Iga Swiatek leading the women's entry list. Joining the men's field are Alexander Zverev, a rising star who reached a ranking of two in the world this year, and the resurgent Nick Kyrgios, one of the most colourful characters on the ATP Tour. From the women's field, former world number one, Simona Halep and current Wimbledon champion, Elena Rybakina add to a world-class line-up of tennis talent.
Djokovic added "this new event is exciting, there's no doubt about it. I absolutely love playing in Dubai, I've had a lot of success there over the years and really enjoy the fans. This is something different, and it's going to be great being a part of it."
Iga Swiatek, the reigning French Open and US open champion, added "I like it most when tennis connects people and when it's true entertainment. When it's combined with a great show and music, it's even better, so that's the reason why I'm excited to join this year's World Tennis League. I'm happy that together with other top players we'll introduce tennis as fun to new audiences.”
A player lottery will be held on 1st November, with the 16-player line-up split into four teams of four players each, and a Round Robin format for matches across the tournament before a final day showdown with the top two teams.
With many of the world's best tennis players on court and top music acts to thrill ticket holders, The Greatest Show On Court has something for everyone.
For more information on World Tennis League, please visit: worldtennisleague.com/
Image top: Novak Djokovic ; image above: current French Open and US Open Champion, Iga Swiatek
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