The Davis Cup is one of the most prestigious tennis tournaments of the season. However, in the last few years, the tournament has undergone a major revamp. Gerrard Pique‘s Kosmos Group took on the onus of organizing the event and prescribed a format that, in their opinion, would be more satiating and popular with the tennis fans.
The home-away matches were dropped in favor of neutral-venue matches with best-of-three sets rather than best-of-five sets. The company signed a 25-year deal with the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for $2.5 billion in 2018. However, it has decided to end its partnership much earlier without giving much detail.
Alexander Zverev has always been more critical of the new format. He denounced Gerrard Pique and the Davis Cup for making the changes.
“You saw that you can’t buy history with money. Sport lives from emotions and the Davis Cup was always the competition where you experienced the biggest emotions and the best atmosphere,” he said.
He also advocated reverting to the old format. He also wants the ITF to involve players in the decision-making process.
“You could see that the new format doesn’t work. I believe you need home and away ties. I am a fan of five-set matches. The ITF should involve players in making these kinds of decisions,” he continued.
However, the ITF has decided to continue with the current format for this year. It may take suggestions from players starting next year.
“The ITF can confirm that its partnership with Kosmos Tennis for Davis Cup is ending. The ITF has ensured financial contingencies are in place and as the custodian of the competition we will operate the 2023 Qualifiers and Finals as scheduled, with the Final 8 taking place in Malaga, Spain, this November,” the federation said in a statement.
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Alexander Zverev took refuge of Davis Cup
The World No. 14 is one of the few players who decided to boycott the Davis Cup when the Kosmos Group took over the tournament and made the changes in 2019. He did not play in the competition for Germany for many years.
“The format has to change and I’m sticking to it. I’m someone who’s keeping my word. I want to win the Davis Cup, but I want to win the real Davis Cup,” Alexander Zverev explained reasons for his absence from the competition.
However, he had to deal with criticism from tennis fans and the media for his disturbing remarks and racket smashing act in one of the doubles matches during the Mexican Open. He subsequently lost the match and withdrew from the singles event.
This single incident made him return to the Davis Cup event. He played the Davis Cup qualifiers in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the German team.
“Playing for my home country is always very important to me and I’m proud to represent Germany. Together with the team, I have the big goal of winning the Davis Cup one day. Even if I criticized the new Davis Cup format, there might be an opportunity to play with the team in Germany again. That would be a big dream of mine,” he added further.
He also participated in the 2023 United Cup for Germany. At the Australian Open 2023, he could not advance beyond the second round, losing to Michael Mmoh.
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