Sep 22, 2016

    Plan to get more buzz by picking cities in advance for Cup finals


    TENNIS chiefs hope to adopt the National Football League's Super Bowl model, by selecting cities in advance for the showcase Davis and Fed Cup finals.

    The switch away from one of the finalists hosting the decider is part of a broader strategy aimed at developing the men's and women's international team events.

    Other options under consideration include a tweak of formats to reduce the length of matches, and expanding the top-tier Fed Cup competition to feature 16 nations.

    David Haggerty, elected International Tennis Federation (ITF) president a year ago, hopes to have the new hosting system in place by 2018.

    Speaking at his Roehampton office, in a suburban district of south-west London, he did not name a figure cities would have to come up with to host the final, but said he thought it would be "significant".

    The ITF membership will vote on the plans next August.

    In American football's Super Bowl, the host city is selected well in advance, usually three to five years before the game.

    Similarly, European football's governing body, Uefa, selects the host city for the Champions League final two years in advance.

    Mr Haggerty said he hoped to see cities, federations and their sponsors come together to bid for 2018.

    "The most likely scenario would be for two-to-three-year terms," said the American who won a four-year presidential spell last year.

    "Right now, we know who are in the finals but we don't know where it is going to be."

    Croatia will host Argentina for the 2016 Davis Cup title after winning their respective semi-finals last weekend.

    But a host city has yet to be named.

    "It is really hard to plan and get viewership and fans excited," Mr Haggerty said of the current format.

    "If you have a fixed site, people can begin to plan and look ahead."