Season finale shows UK like a bit of tennis
THE ATP World Tour Finals in London seem to be widely acknowledged as a great success.
But with Andy Murray exiting the tournament via the Duckworth-Lewis method, along with Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, how will the competition fare as it reaches the knockout stages?
Based on the crowd frenzy created by the round robin’s final – and on paper its least glamorous – clash between Robin Soderling and Nikolay Davydenko, the organisers have little reason to worry.
Tennis fever only usually strikes the UK during Wimbledon, but the World Tour Finals offer many things that the showpiece grand slam cannot.
The world’s best eight players (although technically eight of the best nine with Soderling coming in for the injured Andy Roddick) each playing at least three games against each other is a big attraction.
Of the World Tour Finals competitors, Roger Federer only defeated Soderling on his way to the Wimbledon title this year.
The grand slam tournaments typically comprise Federer, Nadal, Murray, etc routing their much lower-ranked opponents in the earlier rounds before meeting each other in the impossible-to-get-tickets later rounds.
Although tickets at the O2 Arena are not cheap, for world class sport they are fairly priced and every game has featured two great players – it is all killer, no filler.
In some way it seems unfair that London is hosting this event with it already possessing Wimbledon.
But with all games, Murray or no Murray, being well supported by a full arena, the event has showed that the British public has a year round passion for tennis.
And with such an array of top players facing each other, then long may it continue to be held on British shores.