The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2017
The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is one of the most eagerly anticipated events on the UAE sporting calendar and one of the most popular tournaments on the international tennis circuit, and in 2017 the event celebrated the 25th anniversary of the tournament in fine style, delivering a fortnight of captivating action and entertainment.
To commemorate the 25th anniversary, a full calendar of celebrations and ceremonies took place during the event to honour those who have been involved for many years, and to recognize their valuable contributions to the success of the tournament.
Those honoured were presented with a commemorative box containing the film, book and coin produced to mark the occasion. The book, “Game, Set and Dubai: A Quarter Century of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships” was officially launched during the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature.
There were more celebrations on Centre Court on the first night of the ATP week when Roger Federer joined Chris Kermode – ATP Executive Chairman and President, and Alison Lee -ATP Executive Vice-President, as the ATP recognized the 25th Anniversary with the presentation of a crystal plate. Dubai Duty Free’s Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO, Salah Tahlak, Tournament Director, Ramesh Cidambi, Chief Operating Officer and Sinead El Sibai, Senior Vice President, Marketing, also presented Kermode, Lee and Federer with a commemorative box containing the film, book and coin, before all cutting a cake to mark the celebration.
Both the WTA and the ATP tournaments boasted world class line-ups. The WTA tournament featured six of the world’s top 10, including world number two Angelique Kerber, reigning French Open champion Garbine Muguruza, reigning WTA Finals champion Dominika Cibulkova, and former Dubai winners Agnieszka Radwanska and Caroline Wozniacki. The ATP tournament event included world number one, Wimbledon, Olympic and ATP World Tour Finals champion Andy Murray, Australian Open and seven-time Dubai champion Roger Federer, US Open winner and defending Dubai champion Stan Wawrinka, two-time finalist Tomas Berdych, and flamboyant Frenchman Gael Monfils.
2017 saw the crowning of two new champions, with Elina Svitolina and Andy Murray claiming their first Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships titles.
Svitolina claimed the title with a hard-fought 6-4 6-2 win over 2011 title holder Caroline Wozniacki. Svitolina’s victory elevated her into the top 10 for the first time. In ATP week Andy Murray became the first British champion at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships as he defeated Fernando Verdasco 6-3 6-2, and his win comes after he finished as runner-up to Roger Federer in Dubai in 2012. While Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina and Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau claimed the doubles titles in WTA and ATP week, respectively.
Dubai Duty Free also conducted the Finest Surprise draw for an Audi Q7 3.0T (Orca Black) immediately after the awarding ceremony of the Men’s final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2017.
The tournament offered something for everyone, from world-class action on court, to the excitement of the thousands of children who participated in the off-court activities and the enjoyment of those soaking up the atmosphere and entertainment in the Tennis Village. Despite some inclement weather the event again attracted huge crowds, with over 100,000 spectators attending over the two weeks.