LONDON — The ATP and the Laver Cup announced today an agreement that will make the annual men’s team event, in which Europe takes on the rest of the world, an official part of the annual ATP Tour calendar.
The agreement gives the event, now approaching its third competition in Geneva, Switzerland this September, access to ATP services, including marketing and social media, along with operational personnel such as officials and physios.
“The Laver Cup team is incredibly excited about this partnership with the ATP. It has always been our hope to build the Laver Cup in partnership with the tennis world, and certification by the ATP after only two editions is an overwhelming validation of our vision,” said Tony Godsick, President and CEO of TEAM8, and Chairman of the Laver Cup.
“We created the Laver Cup to celebrate the greats of the game – past, present and future – and grow interest in our great sport of tennis,” Godsick added. “Partnering with the ATP positions us to continue to achieve that mission and reach even greater audiences.”
Chris Kermode, ATP Executive Chairman and President, said that the reception by tennis fans globally was a major factor in the ATP’s wish to form a partnership.
“The Laver Cup has struck a chord with fans worldwide in a very short time,” said Kermode. “It’s been great to see the passionate participation of the players and the response from the fans at the sold-out events in Prague and Chicago. This event has great potential to reach new fans around the world, and all of us at the ATP are excited to include the Laver Cup as an official part of the ATP Tour calendar and have it featured alongside other tournaments on all our platforms.”
Roger Federer, a partner in TEAM8 who tasked his team with creating the Laver Cup to honour not just the great Rod Laver, but the coterie of tennis legends who paved the way for the success of the current game, said he was delighted with the news.
“As I come closer to the end of my playing career, it’s wonderful to know that the Laver Cup will be part of the tour that I’ve dedicated more than 20 years of my life to. This partnership is a wonderful example of how the tennis family can unite to promote and grow the sport we all love.”
Currently celebrating the 50th anniversary of winning the ‘Grand Slam’ for the second time in 1969, Rod Laver praised the ATP’s official endorsement of his namesake event which has further cemented his legacy.
“I am grateful to the ATP for recognising that the Laver Cup plays an important role in raising awareness of the amateur era of tennis and my fellow ‘barnstormers”. I am honoured and thankful for what has been achieved and to Roger for doing this for us,” said Laver.
The values of the Laver Cup – commitment to excellence, focus on the team, respect for the opponent, and love for the game – has been embodied by the two inaugural captains, Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe.
“Anyone who has seen the Laver Cup knows this is an event that everyone had to get behind. I am proud to have been a part of its genesis, and thankful to the ATP for choosing to endorse it,” said McEnroe.
“The Laver Cup is my favourite week of the year,” said Borg. “I have enjoyed working with all the generations of players and being in front of the fans once again.”
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who played the second Laver Cup last year in Chicago, said, “The Laver Cup is a true celebration of tennis that is loved by the fans and embraced by the players. I experienced it first hand as a player, and as President of the ATP Player Council I’m proud to support this collaboration.”
ATP Tournament Board Representative Charles Humphrey Smith said, “The Laver Cup showcases the world’s greatest male tennis players in a whole new way. It grows interest in the game which benefits all of us in the industry.”
The third edition of the Laver Cup will be held in Geneva, Switzerland from 20-22 September 2019. Register at LaverCup.com for more information and to receive regular updates.