HAMBURG, July 30, 2017
The future of the German Tennis Championships remains uncertain. This was the main statement of Michael Stich, tournament director of the ATP 500 event in Hamburg, during the final news conference on Sunday morning.
“I am not the court or the roof. We simply would like to organize a great tennis tournament,” the former Wimbledon champion said. Licence holder is the German Tennis Federation (DTB). The Hamburg Sports & Entertainment GmbH organizes the event, having a contract until 2018.
From then on, a couple of options for the event seem to be possible: changing the surface to hard courts, looking for another (better) venue or even another city and the new ATP World Tour calendar to be introduced in 2019 will also have to play a role in that.
Fact is that no Top 20 player competed in this year’s tournament at the Rothenbaum, which is rich in tradition. “The star is the tournament,” Stich stated. “The tennis shown throughout the week was fantastic. We had a lot of intense matches, many of them lasting more than two hours. Of course, we would have liked to see Nadal or Zverev playing here but the quality of tennis was very good.”
The DTB will decide in September, who is going to organize the tournament in the future.
Unimpressed by the negotiations in the background, the spectators in Hamburg continue to support their home tournament. “More than 60,000 people came to the venue this week. That’s even more than last year,” organizer Detlef Hammer said.