Turin beats Singapore to hosting rights for ATP Finals from 2021 to 2025

·Editorial Team
Alexander Zverev of Germany plays a return to John Isner of the United States in their ATP World Tour Finals singles tennis match at the O2 Arena in London, Friday Nov. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)
Alexander Zverev of Germany is the reigning champion of the ATP Finals. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

SINGAPORE — The Italian city of Turin has been selected on Wednesday (24 April) as the next host of the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) Finals from 2021 to 2025, ahead of a list of shortlisted candidate cities that includes Singapore.

Turin will be the 15th city to host the prestigious season-ending tournament for men’s professional tennis, since the event’s inception in 1970. It will take over London, which has hosted the Finals since 2009.

Addressing ATP’s announcement, Sport Singapore issued a joint media statement with Singapore Tourism Board and Singapore Sports Hub that said, “We congratulate Turin on being named host city for the ATP Finals, and wish ATP all the best.

“We had put up a compelling bid and will take the decision in our stride. We will continue to look out for world-class events that can inspire the enjoyment of sport here, and add to our vibrancy and attractiveness as a sport and lifestyle destination. We would like to thank everyone who has helped us in the bid.”

Record prize purse when event moves to Turin

The winning bid was put together by the Italian Tennis Federation and Sport e Salute SpA in partnership with the Italian government, the municipality of Turn and the Regione Piemonte regional council.

The tournament, which featured the world’s best eight men’s singles and doubles players of the season, will boast a record prize purse of US$14.5 million (S$19.76 million) when it moves to Turin in 2021.

The host decision was welcomed by men’s world No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who is also the president of the ATP Player Council. He said in a media statement, “The ATP Finals is the biggest and most prestigious event that we have at the ATP. It’s a tournament that has historically moved around, and so I’m very excited to see it move to Turin from 2021.

“It’s still a few years away but I know that the players will be very excited to compete there, and I also hope to be part of what will be a very special event.”

ATP’s decision brings to a close an international bid process that began in August 2018 in which more than 40 cities worldwide expressed an interest in hosting the Finals. Five cities were eventually shortlisted: Turin, London, Manchester, Tokyo and Singapore.

Scheduling and travel time

According to The Straits Times, some of the factors reportedly in Turin's favour was the Italian government's commitment of about €15 million (S$23 million) annually for five years to the ATP Finals.

There is also the issue of scheduling and travel time, with the current calendar seeing players concluding their season in Europe with the Paris Masters 1000 tournament, usually about a week before the ATP Finals.

ATP executive chairman and president Chris Kermode said, “Italy provides us with one of the strongest and most established tennis markets in Europe, and has a proven track record for hosting world class tennis events with the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome, as well as the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan.

“The success of the ATP Finals is critical to the health of the ATP and we believe that Turin has all the ingredients to take the event to new heights and to continue the tournament’s growth following a highly successful 12-year stint in London that will come to an end in 2020.”

Singapore has hosted women’s tennis’ equivalent, the US$7 million WTA Finals, from 2014 to 2018 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. The event moves to Shenzhen this year, with the prize purse doubled to US$14 million.

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