Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Oz Davis Cup captain slams new format




Oz Davis Cup captain slams new format

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Lleyton Hewitt, the Australia Davis Cup captain. AFP

Oz Davis Cup captain slams new format

AUSTRALIA Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt has slammed Barcelona football star Gerard Pique over the tournament’s controversial new format, saying it is “ridiculous” and would hurt the sport.

Under a plan proposed by Pique’s investment group Kosmos and adopted by the International Tennis Federation, the competition will bring together 18 nations for a week at the end of the tennis season for a championship finale.

The 119-year-old Davis Cup competition is currently structured around a 16-nation World Group, contested over four weekends during the year. The remaining countries are then divided into three regional zones.

“I haven’t been a supporter since they first flagged the possible changes,” Hewitt said ahead of Australia’s Davis Cup qualifier against Bosnia and Herzegovina in Adelaide starting on Friday, Adelaide’s the Advertiser newspaper reported on Tuesday.

“I think it really hurts Davis Cup . . . In terms of the structure and format in going into the finals I don’t agree at all with it.

“I think having the finals in one place is ridiculous. I personally don’t think all the top players will play.

“Now we’re being run by a Spanish football player . . . that’s like me coming out asking to change things for the Champions League – it’s ridiculous.”

Hewitt has previously slammed the new-look competition as a “money-grab” that would ruin the historic event, with other Australian tennis legends including Rod Laver and John Newcombe also opposing the reforms.

Kosmos have promised the International Tennis Federation up to $3 billion in prize money over the next quarter-century.

Major players feel that a big event in late November combined with one in January before the Australian Open will mean too much tennis and too little rest.

Roger Federer has said his chances of playing in the condensed Davis Cup were all but non-existent, while Novak Djokovic has said he will give precedence to the ATP’s intended re-launch of the defunct World Team Cup in January 2020 at various Australian venues.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia

  • Police arrest 29 Chinese for PP kidnapping

    Phnom Penh Military Police arrested 29 Chinese nationals on kidnapping charges on Wednesday. The suspects are said to have abducted three other Chinese nationals from a hotel in Chaktomuk commune, Daun Penh district. The operation took place on Wednesday and was led by two deputy commanders –