Schedule for Hopman Cup already published
More than two months in advance, the organizers of the revived Hopman Cup published the schedule with stars like Carlos Alcaraz and Holger Rune in order to boost ticket sales for tennis fans with planning security. But does this calculation really work for the event, which will be held in Nice from July 19th to 23rd?
by Dietmar Kaspar
last edit: May 18, 2023, 07:34 am
Unforgettable are the pictures that were delivered from summery Australia to living rooms around the world at the start of the season in previous years. Hopman Cup - that was tennis in a mixed setting with good-humored players who spread fun and wit in the course of the pre-season. Just looking back at the finals of the last two editions in 2018 and 2019 makes tennis fans click their tongues from a sporting point of view. The Swiss duo Roger Federer and Belinda Bencic prevailed 2-1 against Alexander Zverev and Angelique Kerber, who represented the German colors.
Restocking under different conditions
Due to the creation of the ATP Cup, followed by the new United Cup in the interaction of WTA and ATP, the traditional mixed team tournament had to be removed from the calendar. All the more surprising when the ITF announced the return of the competition last December, albeit with a new date in summer and the European venue Nice.
Announcing Top Players
Little by little, the participating players were announced, who will compete in six national teams on the French Riviera. With Carlos Alcaraz and Holger Rune, for example, successful youngsters were communicated who will not only shape the future of tennis, but also the present. Big names are also registered on the women's side with Olympic champion Belinda Bencic and former world number two Paula Badosa.
Plannability in ticket sales
Every tennis fan who has ever attended a professional event on site knows the problem of buying tickets early. The question of which days the favorite players will actually play is usually only decided at short notice when the game plan is created the day before. A procedure such as that at the ATP tournament in Munich, where the figurehead Alexander Zverev was able to set a fixed date for the opening match well in advance of the tournament due to the bye rule for the top 4 seeded players, is an absolute exception.
Risk of cancellations remains
With the early publication of the game plan, more than two months before the event, the organizers of the Hopman Cup want to suggest reliable planning in this regard. However, anyone who observes the short-term shifts in the draws due to short-term cancellations on a weekly basis should have certain doubts about the real implementation of the exact game plan. While a loss of players from traditional tennis nations such as Spain or France would still have to be compensated in a relatively high-quality manner, things are different in a participating country like Denmark. Instead of Holger Rune, alternatives such as next-placed August Holmgren (ATP No. 413) or Elmer Moller (ATP No. 685) are obvious, while former world No. 33 in women's Clara Tauson is replaced by Sofia Samavati (WTA -No. 347) or Olga Helmi (WTA No. 375) could be replaced. It remains to be hoped that the announced top players will also be able to keep their invitation to the Cote d'Azur.