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Sports

Five cities compete with London to host ATP Finals

media Alex Zverev beat Novak Djokovic to win the 2018 ATP Finals in London. Reuters/Tony O'Brien

The ATP, the ruling body of men's tennis, on Friday revealed five cities that will compete with London to host its prestigious end of season championships. London has staged the eight man event since 2009 and will be the venue for the 2019 and 2020 ATP Finals.

Since August, nearly 40 cities have expressed an interest in replacing the British capital from 2021 until 2025.

Announcing the cities of Manchester, Singapore, Tokyo and Turin, Chris Kermode, the ATP boss, said: "The level of interest we have received worldwide throughout the bid application process reflects the rich heritage of this unique tournament, as well as the success of the event at The O2 since 2009."

Nikolay Davydenko beat Juan Martin del Potro 6-3, 6-4 to take the title in the first year in London after its four year stay in Singapore.

Since then Roger Federer has claimed two crowns while Novak Djokovic has won four. Andy Murray, Grigor Dimitrov and Alex Zverev have also tasted success at a tournament that was first staged in Tokyo in 1970 as the Masters Grand Prix.

Stan Smith overcame Rod Laver in three sets to win the inaugural title. The likes of Ilie Nastase, Guillermo Vilas and Manuel Orantes were subsequent champions as the Masters passed through Paris, Barcelona, Boston, Stockholm and Houston.

Between 1977 and 1989 it was held at Madison Square Garden in New York City before the name of the event was changed to the ATP Tour World Championships and Frankfurt became the host city.

Between 2000 and 2008, the competition was known as the Tennis Masters Cup and it was the ATP Tour World Championships between 2009 and 2016 before becoming the ATP Finals.

But whatever the marketing label, the concept has remained the same: the most successful eight players of the year battling for one of the most glamorous prizes on the circuit. A decision on the 2021 site will be made before March, Kermode said.

“The ATP Finals have never stood still," he added. "There’s no question that London has set a very high benchmark. We believe we will be well placed to determine the next exciting chapter of a tournament that has come to represent the absolute pinnacle in men’s professional tennis.”

 

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