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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Daily Tennis News BUSINESS - Special TIA Edition

Copyright © 2016. No duplication is permitted without permission from Bob Larson Tennis



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Cibulkova Has To Postpone A Honeymoon

Dominika Cibulkova almost had to put off her wedding for Wimbledon, and is now postponing a honeymoon for a potential top ten spot.

The Slovakian is playing the WTA event at Stanford, which starts a week following her wedding.

"Everybody's asking, 'What are you doing here. . .  You should be on your honeymoon,'" said Cibulkova was quoted as saying at a pre-tournament press conference at Stanford. "It's [during] the season, I'm a professional athlete, so I can't just go on a honeymoon."

Even scheduling a wedding during the season was tough -- having chosen the day of the women's final at Wimbledon, Cibulkova almost found herself having to consider changing her plans when she reached the quarterfinals.

"We were really happy that we found a date," she said, adding that her honeymoon will be during the offseason. 

Despite a hectic few days, the No. 12 is ready to compete at the hardcourt event. 

"I came home on Wednesday and for two-three nights, I didn't sleep well because I was so excited about the wedding. I didn't relax too much, and on Monday I was just so tired, so I took a couple of days off. I talked with my coach and he asked me if I was motivated to play and I said, 'Of course, because I'm motivated to get into the Top 10','' she said.

The Slovakian is a former champion at the event.


Murray Pulls Out Of Toronto

Andy Murray has withdrawn from the ATP Masters in Toronto, citing his recent schedule.

Not only did Murray just win his second title at Wimbledon, he went to Serbia to cheer on his Davis Cup teammates the following week. Murray also had a lot of matches coming into Wimbledon, having won Queen's and enjoyed a successful clay season that saw him win Rome and reach the final of the French Open.

"My body needs some recovery time after reaching the latter stages of tournaments," he said in a statement.

The No. 2 plans to train in Mallorca instead. It is the first time he has not played the Canadian event since being eligible for entry.

"Andy has been very loyal to our event over the years, but certainly we are disappointed he has chosen not to be in Toronto this year," tournament director Karl Hale said in a statement.  "Andy is one of the very top players in the world and a fan favorite."

Murray was the tournament's defending champion.


Davis Cup Player Criticizes Court Condition And Quits During Rubber, Giving Tie To Opponent

Santiago Giraldo walked off court during his second singles rubber against Chile in Davis Cup, saying the court was unplayable.

"This was not tennis," said the Columbian, who was a game away from going down two sets.

It handed the tie to Chile, which was leading 2-1 following the doubles.

The top-ranked Columbian also complained about the scheduling and location of the doubles.

"We were forced to play at 7 pm on Saturday on a court in bad condition," he said. "Colombia should not have played."

The less established Chilean team of Hans Podlipnik and Nicholas Jarry defeated Juan Sebastian Cabal and Roger Farah, the Columbian team, in four sets.

Other members of the team backed Giraldo's complaints. According to Cabal, he had been "humiliated" by the Chilean federation and the ITF.

The controversial victory sends Chile through to the World Group playoffs.


Tournament Director Criticizes Player For Performance

Michael Stich has criticized Alexander Zverev for his performance at Hamburg.

A local favorite, Zverev was arguably the tournament's top attraction and would have received an appearance fee for playing in the ATP event. However, he fell in the first round of singles and was defeated alongside brother Misha in 39 minutes in doubles. The 19-year-old also took a wildcard into this week's event at Washington.

"In singles, he did not bring his level [of play], and with his performance in doubles, he harmed himself most," said Stich, the tournament director.

Stich also raised scheduling issues, noting that the tournament was also played in the same week as ATP events as Bastad and Newport, and the Davis Cup quarterfinals.

"We are definitely not satisfied with the player field," he said. "We have already expressed our concern to the ATP and the ITF."

The tournament is already in a difficult week, played on clay in between the grasscourt and hardcourt seasons. Philipp Kohlschreiber, was the top seed, with the German reaching the semifinals. Dominic Thiem and Kevin Anderson withdrew with illness, which Stich did not criticize, but some players also withdrew because of Davis Cup.

"The ATP did not tell us that players were allowed withdrawals only one day before the start of the tournament," said Stich.


Hawkeye Installation Forces Newport To Adjust Groundskeeping

The ATP 250 Newport event is having to adjust its grasscourt groundskeeping because of the addition of Hawkeye.

Previously, the multi-court stadium would rotate matches between courts, reducing wear on each court. Now, however, all stadium matches must be played on the court installed with electronic replay.

"We did our seeding, our spiking and every two weeks applied [fertilizer]... Fortunately, the court has held up," said chief groundskeeper Dan Robillard to a local newspaper.

There has been no change for the side courts. "It's the same -- a lot of overseeding and spiking and hope that the weather cooperates," he said.

The tournament had more 15 grass courts across the grounds before the stadium court reduction. Some players have complained about the court quality of the side courts.

"This is not Wimbledon, our courts are softer because we have a totally different soil base - that's the difference," he said.

Newport typically attracts the ATP's lower-ranked grasscourt specialists.


Cincinnati Picks Up Two New Sponsors

The combined ATP and WTA event at Cincinnati has announced agreements with two more sponsors, Peugeot and Infosys.

"To have such an international sponsor as Peugeot speaks to how important we are in the international tennis community," said the tournament CEO.

It is another move by French car manufacturer Peugeot to increase its international presence in tennis -- a longtime sponsor of the French Open, it has added several other deals within the sport, including partnering with the LTA and Jamie Murray, and sponsoring Novak Djokovic.

The additions mean 14 sponsors in total for Cincinnati, including title sponsor Western & Southern, a local company, along with other international names such as American Express, and Emirates.

The tournament had record attendance of 119,000 a year ago, and said recent ticket sales are tracking above that amount.


Washington Is Still Not A Participant Of The US Open Series

The Citi Open in Washington is still standing apart from the US Open Series, having refused to agree to the television broadcast arrangement for the events.

The US Open Series has a broadcast agreement with ESPN, which shows the tournaments on ESPN2 and online. The Masters and Premier 5 events receive 22-28 hours both on ESPN2 and online, but the smaller events receive only 4-6 hours on ESPN2.

That has led Washington to broadcast the tournament on Tennis Channel, which is providing 180 hours of broadcast from three courts. That will include all rounds of play as they happen, as well as repeats and highlights.

The other hardcourt events will be broadcast by ESPN2, which has a multiyear agreement with the USTA to show the US Open Series.

The US Open Series includes joint sponsorship, promotion and structural assistance for tournaments by the USTA, which includes incentives for players to compete in more events and gain points in the Series.


The Presenting Sponsor Of The WTA Finals Is A Happy Man

The president of SC Global, the presenting sponsor of the WTA Finals, is happy with the company's association with the event.

SC Global CEO Simon Cheong told the Singapore Business Times that the WTA Finals came to Singapore just as the luxury property developer was looking for another major sports sponsorship. Having the company's logo shown on court and announced in the stadium allows the company to raise its awareness among the large worldwide population watching the tournament.

"We're not a consumer products company...we're not so visible from that standpoint, he said "The WTA Finals is a world-class event, and it has helped elevate our visibility, both in Singapore and abroad. That's what we wanted, an event that would bring us up to a global platform.

"The numbers show that we managed to get coverage in 164 countries around the world, and a TV audience of over 32 million."

The company is also sponsoring local tennis participation, providing 11,500 students with lessons as part of its program involvement.


Wimbledon Championships Had High Local Viewing

The final of the Championships between Andy Murray and Milos Raonic received good ratings in Britain and record ratings in Canada.

A peak of 13.3 million tuned in to BBC for the final in Britain, slightly less than the 13.6 million for the European soccer final the same evening on the same channel. The amount was significantly lower than the 17 million that watched Murray's first Wimbledon victory.

The final was also broadcast simultaneously on Eurosport.

In Canada, a record of an average 1.6 million people watched the final, the highest for a tennis match in the country. The final was shown on TSN and RDS. Altogether, 4.7 million people tuned in for some of the match, with a peak of 2.4 million watching. Raonic gave Canada its first representative in a men's Grand Slam event final.

The semifinals between Raonic and Roger Federer received an average of 776,000, a record for a semifinal, with 2.5 million people watching some of the match. 


Bouchard Expands Her Sponsor Portfolio

Eugenie Bouchard has signed an endorsement deal with Colgate.

The 22-year-old Canadian publicized the agreement on social media. "Excited to announce my new "teammate,"' she said, holding up a box of toothpaste.

She is promoting the company's 'Enamel Health' line.

It is the first deal Bouchard has announced since joining the PRP agency, owned by former Agassi agent Perry Rogers.

Bouchard was a top prospect for sponsors in 2014, when she reached two Grand Slam event semifinals and a final, signing deals with companies such as Coca-Cola. She then switched agencies, joining IMG, but attracted fewer partners as her ranking dropped in 2015, though she did sign a deal with Aviva, which also sponsors Tennis Canada.

She changed agencies again this season, saying she wanted a smaller company which will concentrate more attention on her. Bouchard still has deals with Nike, and several other companies, and is estimated by Forbes to earn $5.5 million annually.

Financial terms of the deal were not given.


Wimbledon Victory Will Bring Big Bucks To Murray

Andy Murray's sponsorship appeal will increase following his second victory at Wimbledon, but the No. 2 usually only agrees to a limited number of deals.

High increases in his potential income are anticipated, with a British sporting consultant telling a British newspaper that Murray could increase his worth by more than GB 60 million pounds (about $85 million).

Similar projections were made following Murray's first Grand Slam event victory in 2012, with suggestions he could earn GB 20 million annually through sponsorships, and his 2013 victory at Wimbledon, with suggestions of BG 15 million to 20 million annually in sponsorships.

The actual figures were lower, with the 29-year-old not signing a lot of deals following those wins. Murray is currently said by Forbes to be earning $23 million annually, with $15 million off the court. 

That is including a clothing deal said to be about $3-4 million annually.

Murray is represented by his own agency.


Escude Assumes Position With Brest Open

Nicolas Escude is the ambassador for the Brest Open, a 106,500 Euro challenger event.

"We are proud to have Nicholas join our team," said the tournament director.

The tournament also has a title sponsor, Credit Agricole, and wants to use Escude to help attract a good field and raise awareness of the event.

"Holding the Brest Open in the Brittany region, and especially the city of Brest. . . which wants an arena on its territory is an asset for international tennis in Brittany," said Escude. "I will do everything I can with our collaboration to make the Brest Open Credit Agricole a fixture on the professional tennis circuit."

Escude has been No. 20 in the world and is a former Fed Cup captain.


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