Former Wimbledon champion Pat Cash has been named ambassador of the Abu Dhabi Mubadala World Tennis Championship (MWTC) that will take place from 26th – 28th December, at the official press conference held in the capital earlier this month.
Australian Cash who also held a masterclass for 400 children, said in an interview with Sport 360 that he “places the tournament as one of the very best in the world”. Six of the world’s top players Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, David Ferrer, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Stanislas Wawrinka, will battle it out on court at this years event to be held at the Tennis Stadium at Zayed Sports City in the capital of the United Arab Emirates.
“It just doesn’t get any better than this,” said Cash, “It’s great to have a tournament like this in this community. The players are happy to be here.”
“I think it’s already up there,” added Cash, who won the Wimbledon title in 1987. “It’s very important to have pre-Grand Slam matches and this is the first one of the year and it’s very crucial to the players.
“It’ll be very crucial for Andy Murray, he’s just had minor back surgery and he’ll be back playing soon but this will be his first event so it’s important for him to be playing. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has had some injuries and he’s coming back into form and of course the other players have had such great years.”
Djokovic has won the last two tournaments, defeating Spaniard’s Nicolas Almagro and David Ferrer in the finals in 2012 and 2011 respectively. The draw is yet to be announced but the organisers have promised an exciting opening day for tennis fans.
Tennis Stadium at Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi
“It will be the best day one we’ve ever had,” said Greg Sproule, managing director of tournament organisers, IMG Middle East, who was also talking to Sport 360, “We have the winner and the finalist of every Grand Slam event this year.If you look at what’s been happening amongst the players this year it’s really quite exciting as well. We saw on Sunday when Djokovic beat Nadal in the Beijing final and so that throws it back to Rafa to see how he responds in Shanghai, and that build up will continue to December 26 when the MWTC begins here.”
Alongside the professional tournament, the organisers run The Mubadala Community Cup which aims to develop interest in the game of tennis in the UAE, with a particular emphasis on youth. This community event encourages tennis enthusiasts of all ages to enjoy friendly competition, have fun and get a once in a lifetime opportunity to play with the world’s top tennis stars. Tennis players from all skill levels are encouraged to participate. More information can be found at www.mubadalawtc.com
Sources: Sport 360 and www.mubadalawtc.com