From the Tennis Industry Association: RANCHO MIRAGE, CALIF. (March 25, 2015) – A high-powered lineup of tennis, sports and business executives shared their insights, issues, and concerns at the 2015 Tennis Industry Association (TIA) Tennis Summit, held March 17-18 in conjunction with the BNP Paribas Open men’s and women’s professional tennis tournament in Indian Wells, Calif. The event was held at the Westin Mission Hills Golf Resort & Spa in nearby Rancho Mirage.
Among the speakers at the Tennis Summit were TV sports broadcaster Ted Robinson, sports and performance psychologist and best-selling author Dr. Jim Loehr, USTA President and CEO Katrina Adams, Women’s Tennis Association Chairman and CEO Stacey Allaster, ATP Tour Vice President of Marketing George Ciz, Life Time Fitness Founder and CEO Bahram Akradi, Sports & Fitness Industry Association President and CEO Tom Cove, U.S. Professional Tennis Association CEO John Embree, Professional Tennis Registry CEO Dan Santorum, Tennis Hall of Fame coaching legend Nick Bollettieri, tennis management company founder and former pro player Peter Burwash, Mylan World TeamTennis CEO and Commissioner Ilana Kloss, Tennis Magazine Publisher Jeff Williams, and Tennis Channel Vice President David Egdes.
“We brought together a terrific lineup of tennis industry executives, legends, pros, coaches and other sports and business personalities to examine the state of the tennis industry and the sport,” said TIA President Greg Mason. “Our speakers hit key topics and themes that will affect growth in every segment of the tennis industry. Plus, attendees were able to ask questions and make comments at a number of ‘Open Forums.’ The interaction produced spirited discussions that will help the sport move forward.”
Topics that were addressed at the Summit included:
Mason, TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer and sports marketing research expert Keith Storey led off the Summit with the “State of the Industry.” Among the data they presented was the value of the overall “tennis economy,” which was at 5.73 billion at year-end 2014, up 3 percent from 2013.
Mason outlined concerns he has about the industry, including the fact that 1.5 million fewer entry-level tennis racquets were purchased from 2008 to 2014. Another concern is the age of the average tennis player is getting older. “We need to make sure we’re doing all we can to attract younger players to our sport,” he said, adding that it also extends to needing to bring younger people into the business of tennis, too.
One key to helping boost participation, Mason said, is the industry-wide initiative “Try Tennis Free,” which runs throughout the month of May and is designed to give new and returning players an opportunity to get into tennis for free at local facilities and with local pros. “The Try Tennis Free campaign can bring in large numbers of players, of all ages, looking to benefit from all that tennis has to offer,” he said. Mason urged all tennis providers to register their free program offers at PlayTennis.com.
Following Mason and the TIA, Tom Cove, the CEO of the Sports & Fitness Industry Association, identified and defined key trends that will impact the tennis and sports industries, among them that health and wellness will be the “No. 1 driver” of sports participation in 2015 and that “parents want a good experience for the whole family” when it comes to sports and recreation.
Cove also discussed the “inactivity pandemic” in the U.S., including how 80 million Americans on a recent survey reported they do no sports or activity at all. “Inactivity has increased 28 percent over the past seven years,” Cove said. “We need to build a culture of activity based on fun sports activities.”
Katrina Adams, the new president, chairman and CEO of the U.S. Tennis Association (USTA), talked about her priorities for her two-year term, which includes targeting the Hispanic community as a way to give tennis participation a boost in the U.S. Her goals also include finding more and better ways to reach out to recreational high school players, which she called a “huge opportunity” for the industry, and also emphasizing the importance of sportsmanship in tennis. Adams also plans to continue to increase the USTA’s collaboration and partnerships with other groups and organizations.
USTA Executive Director Gordon Smith discussed the ongoing improvements to the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York, home of the US Open. Plans call for spending more than $500 million over the next four years, including construction of a roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium. “It’s important to be the leader, especially in the sports and entertainment capital of the world,” he said.
Smith also discussed the major, 102-court facility the USTA will build at Lake Nona, Fla., which will break ground on April 18 and has been dubbed the “new home of American tennis.” The site will serve as a training ground for players and coaches, and will be the home to the USTA Player Development and Community Tennis departments.
The professional game was on display with updates from WTA Chairman and CEO Stacey Allaster and ATP Tour Vice President of Marketing George Ciz, who both discussed plans for growth of the women’s and men’s tours, respectively. Allaster then joined a panel with David Egdes of Tennis Channel, Ilana Kloss of Mylan World TeamTennis and J. Wayne Richmond of the Emirates Airline US Open Series for a discussion on how the pro tours and their players connect to the grassroots.
World-renowned sports and performance psychologist and best-selling author Dr. Jim Loehr wrapped up the Summit’s first day with insights into how the tennis and sports industry can remain relevant to today’s athletes and culture.
“There is a lot of competition for kids’ participation in sports and activities,” Loehr said. “Tennis must do a better job of addressing parents to let them know how tennis is different than any other sport. How do we accelerate tennis learning? How do we make tennis friendlier? How do we make learning tennis more fun? How do we awaken the world to the value of tennis in life?”
Loehr added that the industry needs to do a better job selling tennis to parents, noting several points that work in tennis’s favor, including how the sport provides a full-body workout, exercises the brain, can be played for a lifetime, and helps to make a better, more fully functioning person.
The second day opened with Emmy Award-winning TV sportscaster Ted Robinson, who offered his take on the importance of tennis in today’s society and on what tennis can learn from other sports. “Tennis is unique in that some of the greatest players still talk about tennis and are great ambassadors for the sport,” he said.
To bring more spectators and participants into the sport, Robinson said technology was vital, especially for embracing millennials through digital content. “Be proud of tennis,” he said. “It’s a phenomenal activity.”
Life Time Fitness founder and CEO Bahram Akradi, named Tennis Industry magazine’s “Person of the Year” for his company’s commitment to tennis, explained why tennis has been a wise investment for his business and how he is looking to help the sport grow through his facilities. Life Time Fitness is the largest operator of indoor courts in the U.S. At Life Time facilities, “Tennis courts change the space from a fitness club to a country club,” Akradi said. “If there’s any chance to put in tennis courts, we will. Tennis is here to stay, and we plan to grow it at every opportunity.”
The USTA’s chief executive of Community Tennis, Kurt Kamperman, led a panel discussion and Open Forum on the challenges and opportunities of growing tennis at the recreational level. Panelist included the heads of the two main teaching professional organizations: Dan Santorum of the PTR and John Embree of the USPTA.
“Millennial parents want more local sports, shorter play formats, and non-elimination formats,” Kamperman said. “We’ve got senior players covered, but we still have work to do with youth players and getting them into the game.”
Peter Burwash, a former pro tour player and founder of a major tennis management company, and frequent speaker for Fortune 500 companies, discussed lessons he learned in his personal and professional life in tennis and how they can apply to growing this sport. He gave his list of the characteristics of a good leader: enthusiasm, great creativity, expanding your horizons, empathy and appreciation. “The strongest leaders are lifetime learners,” he added.
Immediately following the Tennis Summit, on March 18-19, top tennis facility managers and consultants shared their knowledge and experience at the third annual Tennis Owners & Managers (T.O.M.) Conference, also presented by the TIA.
Coaching legend Nick Bollettieri, who received the highest honor in tennis last July when he was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame, spoke at a lunch kicking off the T.O.M. Conference, praising tennis and asking what other sport you can play well into your 90s. “Keep your mission top of mind at all times,” he told the crowd, “and don’t be afraid to fail-it’s critical to success.”
“As a follow-up to both the Tennis Summit and the T.O.M. Conference, we’re meeting to outline a plan that we hope will go a long way to achieving transformational change within this industry,” said de Boer of the TIA. “These conferences examined the industry and our sport, and where it’s headed, and helped to define ways to ensure growth. We want to make sure we’re on the right path for the long-term.”
The TIA plans to present its annual Tennis Forum on Aug. 31 at the Grand Hyatt in New York City, as the US Open begins. Details for 2016 tennis industry events will be announced in the near future. Visit TennisIndustry.org for more information.
TIA Board of Directors
adidas: David Malinowski
America Sports Builders Assoc.: Fred Stringfellow
ATP World Tour: Linda Clark
Babolat: Eric Babolat
Dunlop Sports Group: Kai Nitsche
ESPN: Jason Bernstein
HEAD Penn Racquet Sports: Greg Mason (TIA President)
IHRSA: Meredith Poppler
International Management Group: Kevin Callanan
International Tennis Federation: Dave Miley
International Tennis Hall of Fame: Todd Martin
Mylan World TeamTennis: Ilana Kloss
Prince Sports: Mike Ballardie
Professional Tennis Registry: Dan Santorum
Sports & Fitness Industry Association: Tom Cove
Tennis Channel: David Egdes
Tennis Magazine: Jeff Williams
U.S. Professional Tennis Association: John Embree
U.S. Racquet Stringers Association: David Bone
U.S. Tennis Association: Kurt Kamperman
Wilson Sporting Goods: Cory Springer
WTA Tennis: Stacey Allaster
TIA Retail Representative: Jim Fromuth
(March 24, 2015) SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Mark Philippoussis defeated Andre Agassi 7-6 (4) in the one-set championship match Tuesday to win the Champions Shootout, the opening event on the 2015 PowerShares Series, at the Huntsman Center at the University of Utah.
“A match like this could go either way,” Agassi said following the final. “I had a lot some chances early on when you get down to a breaker with Mark you have to execute on the right points. He did that tonight, but it was lot of fun trying to chase down his shots.”
Philippoussis, the 2003 Wimbledon runner-up, was aided not only by his powerful serve – which earned him the nick-name of “Scud” – but in the fact that his booming shots broke the strings in all three of Andre Agassi’s racquets, forcing the eight-time major champion to finish the match using one of the Australian’s racquets.
The tournament win was third on the PowerShares Series for Philippoussis and the first since winning in Surprise, Arizona in 2010. Agassi was seeking his eighth career PowerShares Series title.
The one-night four-player tournament event marked the first pro tennis event to exclusively use Hawk-Eye electronic line-calling technology in lieu of linespeople.
In the semifinal matches earlier in the night, Philippoussis posted a 6-3 win over James Blake, who won the PowerShares Series event in Salt Lake City last year, when played at the Energy Solutions Arena. Agassi defeated Jim Courier 6-3 in the other semifinal.
The PowerShares Series continues Wednesday night in Los Angeles at the Galen Center at the University of Southern California where Philippoussis, Courier and Blake will join Andy Roddick in the field. Philippoussis is a late replacement in the Los Angeles field for Pete Sampras, who injured his calf muscle while playing in an event in Sweden over the weekend and was forced to withdraw from the event. For full schedule, player and ticket information, go to www.PowerSharesSeries.com
The remaining PowerShares Series schedule with full fields are as follows:
Wednesday, March 25: Los Angeles, Calif., (Galen Center at USC) “SoCal Honda Dealers Helpful Cup” featuring Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, Mark Philippoussis, James Blake
Wednesday, April 1: Lincoln, Neb., (Pinnacle Bank Arena at Univ. of Nebraska) “Champions Cup Presented by Woods Park Tennis” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, James Blake
Thursday, April 2: Chicago, Ill. (Sears Centre) “PowerShares QQQ Challenge” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, James Blake
Thursday, April 16: Austin, Texas (Cedar Park Center) “Champions Shootout” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, James Blake
Friday, April 17: Little Rock, Ark. (Jack Stephens Center at the UALR) “Champions Cup” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, Mark Philippoussis
Saturday, April 18: Dallas, Texas (Moody Coliseum at SMU) “Champions Showdown” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, Mark Philippoussis
Wednesday, April 22: Boston, Mass. (Agganis Arena at Boston University) “Champions Cup” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, James Blake
Thursday, April 23: Richmond, Va., (Siegel Center at VCU) “Champions Challenge” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, James Blake
Wednesday, April 29: Minneapolis, Minn. (Target Center) “Champions Shootout” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Michael Chang, James Blake
Thursday, April 30: Cincinnati, Ohio (Cintas Center at Xavier) “Champions Showdown” featuring John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Michael Chang, James Blake
Saturday, May 2: Vancouver, Canada (Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre at UBC) “Champions Showdown” featuring Pete Sampras, John McEnroe, Michael Chang, Mark Philippoussis
In 2014, John McEnroe won the points title for the first time in the nine-year history of Champions Series tennis by winning events in Kansas City, Indianapolis, Nashville and Charlotte. McEnroe was followed in the points standings by Blake in second place and Roddick in third place.
(March 10, 2015) NEW YORK, NY – Madison Square Garden played host to the BNP Paribas Showdown on Tuesday in conjunction with World Tennis Day. The main exhibition event saw world No. 11 Grigor Dimitrov take down No. 2 Roger Federer 6-2, 1-6, 7-5, rallying from a break down in the final set in front of 14, 894 fans.
Madison Square Garden held the ATP World Tour Finals from 1977-1989. Tennis Panorama News asked Federer and Dimitrov about bringing the event back to New York City.
Tennis Panorama News: “You both clearly enjoy playing in the Garden, do you think the ATP should bring the Year End back here?”
Federer: “Yeah, let me answer that. I’ve been in politics a little be more in the game than Grigor has.
“I think if we come here, everything needs to be right – the time, the money, to be honest, because in London we have an unbelievable tournament going on right now. So it needs a lot in my opinion to move away from O2 (Arena) which is a wonderful venue It’s sold out every single session – day session, night session and it’s very, very successful so I don’t know what the ATP is going to do with it, but it’s the crown jewel of the ATP Tour and a lot of thought will go into it and I’m sure they are checking out different venues all around the world. But clearly also speaking to London, which has a lot of history, the same as here in New York.
“So in my opinion, I would love see the Year End Championships in a strong market, in a cool city – and clearly New York fits the bill for that but still I think that a lot needs to be done, but clearly in some way I would love to see tennis back at the Garden. No doubt about it, especially after tonight again.”
In a bit of levity after both men were asked about their initial memories about Madison Square Garden, 33-year-old Federer reminisced about watching New York Knicks games on TV in the early 1990s, while 23-year-old Dimitrov added: “I was born around the ’90s,” which elicited laughter from those in the news conference.
Although, the win for the Bulgarian is only an exhibition victory, he’ll take it. Dimitrov is 0-3 on the tour against the Swiss. “I have so much respect for him,” he said.
“I think he played very well, “Federer said. He did really well to turn the match around, honestly. So credit to him. It’s a lot of pressure – first time at the Garden.”
“We did have some great shots,” Federer said. I thought it was actually a pretty high level match at the end of the day.”
— World Tennis Day (@WorldTennisDay) March 11, 2015
In one rally, both men exchanged between-the-legs shots, also known as a “tweener.” Dimitrov also substituted himself out of the match during the third set, and let a young boy take over for a point. The boy hit a lob winner over Federer’s head. “It’s special to play at the Garden,” Federer said. ” This is only my third time. This is very unique and enjoyed the experience.” “I’m thrilled. It was an amazing experience for me,” Dimitrov said of his first time playing in the Garden. ” To be out there playing against Roger.”
— World Tennis Day (@WorldTennisDay) March 11, 2015
The evening at the “Showdown” began with a pair of Hall of Fame members squaring off to commemorate the 25th anniversary of their five-set 1990 WTA Finals match which also took place at Madison Square Garden.
Gabriela Sabatini, 44 exacted a little revenge with her 8-5 pro set win over 41-year-old Monica Seles. Seles won the match 25 years ago.
Speaking of Hall of Famers, Roger Federer admitted that Martina Hingis has approached him about playing mixed doubles with her at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
“I have to figure out things, what my priority is at the end of the day and Martina has done a lot for tennis in Switzerland,” said the fellow Swiss. “She was a hero of mine. Seeing her on the tour basically when I was still, not knowing what I was doing on the tennis court really. She was already winning Wimbledon and all those things.”
Karen Pestaina for Tennis Panorama News
(February 25, 2015) MIAMI BEACH, FL – AYS has announced the inaugural Taste of Tennis Miami presented by Citi taking place on Monday, March 23rd poolside at W South Beach. For 15 years, Taste of Tennis has kicked off the US Open Tennis Championships in New York and it is widely considered the World’s Premier Food & Tennis Experience! The event brings together professional athletes, top chefs and luxury brands for an unforgettable evening of gourmet food, interactive sponsor experiences, signature cocktails and appearances by the world’s best tennis players. Tennis personalities and local celebrities will be paired with some of Miami’s best chefs to Serve Up a unique food tasting experience. Tennis’ most celebrated doubles team, Bob and Mike Bryan, will be joined by a number of Miami’s finest chefs, including chefs from BLT Prime, Sushi Samba, Wild Fish Direct, Bocce, Khong River House and more to be announced.
“Taste of Tennis has such an amazing history in New York and we believe W South Beach provides the perfect backdrop for the inaugural Taste of Tennis Miami. We’re looking forward to celebrating our passions for crafted cocktails/cuisine and of course, to setting the scene here in South Beach. We couldn’t be more excited to host this one of a kind event,” said Rick Ueno, General Manager at W South Beach. AYS President Judi Lerner added, “We are thrilled to bring this event to Miami. Great food, music, signature cocktails and pro tennis players, poolside at the W South Beach, we can’t think of a better way to celebrate the return of tennis to South Florida.”
A portion of the proceeds from the event benefits a local charity of choice. This year’s beneficiary, in addition to a full list of participating chefs and players, will be announced prior to the event. For more information and to purchase tickets to the 2015 Taste of Tennis Miami presented by Citi, please visit www.tasteoftennismiami.com. Major sponsors for the Innaugural Taste of Tennis Miami include Citi, W South Beach, Franciscan Estate, Mouton Cadet, Volkl, Head Penn, among others.
New York, NY (February 26, 2015) – Two talented junior players will once again be featured as part of the annual BNP Paribas Showdown at Madison Square Garden. The match, presented by HEAD Penn Racquet Sports, will feature Cori “Coco” Gauff and Gabriella Price as part of World Tennis Day on March 10.
The match will take to the court prior to tennis legends Monica Seles and Gabriela Sabatini facing each other in a 25th anniversary rematch of their famed 1990 five-set WTA Championship final and Roger Federer taking on Grigor Dimitrov in the main event of the eighth annual BNP Paribas Showdown.
“One of the most rewarding parts of World Tennis Day is seeing the juniors participate in clinics and matches,” said Jerry Solomon, President, StarGames Inc. “Sloane Stephens and Dennis Kudla, among others have played at the BNP Paribas Showdown before launching their professional careers and we hope others will follow in their footsteps. Maybe one day one of our juniors will be back to play in the main event!”
At 10 years old, Cori “Coco” Gauff is a young tennis champion on the rise. Coco started playing tennis just short of her seventh birthday. Her love and dedication to the sport has resulted in a number of championship titles including the 2014 USTA girls 12 Clay Court Super National Singles where she was the youngest winner in USTA history at the young age of 10. There are many more wins for Coco on the horizon, so continue to be on the lookout for this up and comer!
Gabriella started playing tennis when she only four years old. Since then, Gabby has grown leaps and bounds in her tennis skills, along with her love of the game. Currently, Gabby is 11 years old and ranked #3 in the nation in Girl’s 12 and under and top 90 in Girl’s USTA 14 and under. Her heart, will and spirit to compete have helped her endure tough challenges along the way and has increased her chances for success at a young age. Gabby wants to be the best she can be and dreams about winning many Grand Slams when she is older.
This will be the fifth time juniors have been included in the BNP Paribas Showdown. The previous junior matches featured:
2008: Denis Kudla (15 years old) vs Junior Ore (15)
2009: Sloane Stephens (15) vs Gail Brodsky (17)
2010: Nicole Gibbs (16) vs Sachia Vickery (14)
2015: Francis Taifoe (16) vs Reilly Opelka (16)
LOS ANGELES, Feb. 23, 2015 InsideOut Sports & Entertainment today announced
the draws for its 2015 PowerShares Series champions tennis circuit. The
PowerShares Series, the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis
players, will visit 12 cities in 2015 starting March 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah
and concluding Saturday, May 2 in Vancouver, Canada. Players competing on the
2015 PowerShares Series are John McEnroe, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Jim
Courier, Andy Roddick, Michael Chang, James Blake and Mark Philippoussis.
Each one-night event will feature two one-set semifinal matches, followed by a
oneset championship match. For more information: www.PowerSharesSeries.com.
The full 2015 PowerShares Series schedule with event match-ups are as follows:
Tuesday, March 24: Salt Lake City, Utah (Huntsman Center) “Champions Shootout”
James Blake vs. Mark Philippoussis, Andre Agassi vs. Jim Courier
Wednesday, March 25: Los Angeles, Calif., (Galen Center at USC) “SoCal Honda
Dealers Helpful Cup”
Pete Sampras vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake
Wednesday, April 1: Lincoln, Neb., (Pinnacle Bank Arena at Univ. of Nebraska)
“Champions Cup Presented by Woods Park Tennis”
Andy Roddick vs. Jim Courier, James Blake vs. John McEnroe
Thursday, April 2: Chicago, Ill. (Sears Centre) “PowerShares QQQ Challenge”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake
Thursday, April 16: Austin, Texas (Cedar Park Center) “Champions Shootout”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake
Friday, April 17: Little Rock, Ark. (Jack Stephens Center at the UALR)
Andy Roddick vs. Jim Courier, John McEnroe vs. Mark Philippoussis
Saturday, April 18: Dallas, Texas (Moody Coliseum at SMU) “Champions Showdown”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. Mark Philippoussis
Wednesday, April 22: Boston, Mass. (Agganis Arena at Boston University)
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake
Thursday, April 23: Richmond, Va., (Siegel Center at VCU) “Champions Challenge”
Jim Courier vs. Andy Roddick, John McEnroe vs. James Blake
Wednesday, April 29: Minneapolis, Minn. (Target Center) “Champions Shootout”
John McEnroe vs. James Blake, Andy Roddick vs. Michael Chang
Thursday, April 30: Cincinnati, Ohio (Cintas Center at Xavier) “Champions
Andy Roddick vs. James Blake, John McEnroe vs. Michael Chang
Saturday, May 2: Vancouver, Canada (Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre at
UBC) “Champions Showdown”
Michael Chang vs. Mark Philippoussis, Pete Sampras vs. John McEnroe
In 2014, McEnroe won the points title for the first time in the nine-year
history of Champions Series tennis by winning events in Kansas City,
Indianapolis, Nashville and Charlotte. McEnroe was followed in the points
standings by Blake in second place and Roddick in third place.