Reception for IPTL has series director claiming success

International Premier Tennis League boss Mahesh Bhupathi declared its launch in the Philippines a success as the series moves on to Singapore for the second stop on their tour on Tuesday.
Andy Murray of Britain and Maria Sharapova of Russia will be back on court as the International Premier Tennis League gets underway in Singapore on December 1. Dennis M Sabangan / EPA
Andy Murray of Britain and Maria Sharapova of Russia will be back on court as the International Premier Tennis League gets underway in Singapore on December 1. Dennis M Sabangan / EPA

International Premier Tennis League boss Mahesh Bhupathi declared its launch in the Philippines a success, ushering in a fast-paced, television-friendly version of one of the world’s most popular sports.

Critics who have dismissed the four-city tournament as a meaningless event had been proven wrong by huge crowds turning up to cheer some of the sport’s biggest names since its debut on Friday, he said.

“With the kind of high we started off here in Manila we can safely say that we’re off to a good start,” IPTL managing director Bhupathi said as the Manila leg of the tournament drew to a close on Sunday.

Serena Williams, the women’s world No 1, played for the Singapore Slammers, and will again lead the team when the second round of action in Singapore begins on Tuesday.

The American is also impressed with the format, as she said: “I had a lot of fun. I love the team atmosphere.

“If you lose a match, everyone is still positive and that’s what I love about it.”

The UAE Royals made a successful start to their campaign, despite having to do without Novak Djokovic, the men’s world No 1. They defeated the Manila Mavericks 29-24 and the Singapore Slammers 28-22 in their opening two matches, before they went down to Indian Aces 28-20 in their final match in Manila on Sunday.

The UAE Royals start off the action today in Singapore as they face the Indian Aces, who are the only side with a 100 per cent record at present.

They go up against the Manila Mavericks tomorrow and then face Singapore Slammers on Thursday.

The teams then play in India before playing in Dubai between December 11-13.

Follow us on twitter at @SprtNationalUAE

Published: December 1, 2014 04:00 AM

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