ATP allows four new events for 2020, WTA adds Czech tournament

Tennis: US OPEN
FILE PHOTO: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA; Alexander Zverev of Germany (R) walks onto the court as Alejandro Davidovich Fokina of Spain (L) receives treatment from an ATP trainer during an injury timeout on day seven of the 2020 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

September 11, 2020

LONDON (Reuters) – Four new tournaments were added to the provisional ATP calendar for the remainder of the 2020 season while the WTA added an event in the Czech Republic in October, the men’s and women’s tours announced on Thursday.

The German city of Cologne will host back-to-back ATP 250 events on indoor hard while Sardinia will stage a claycourt event and Nur-Sultan in Kazakhstan will host an indoor event.

The events will be on single-year licence as the ATP offers professionals the opportunity to earn money and ranking points in the wake of the coronavirus shutdown.

All the events will be subject to satisfying strict health and safety, international travel and ATP event requirements.

“Adding new events to the Tour calendar is a positive step given the many challenges our sport has faced this year, and I would like to thank all the event organisers on the calendar,” ATP Chairman Andrea Gaudenzi said.

“Our goal was to create additional opportunities for players and entertainment for our fans, and to do so in a safe and practical way. We are delighted to have tennis back on court again and these new events will help us finish the year strongly, as we build towards the season-ending ATP Finals.”

The Cologne events begin on Oct. 12, the same day as the claycourt tournament in Sardinia. The Astana Open in Nur-Sultan starts on Oct. 26.

The WTA circuit, which was the first to resume after the shutdown with an event in Italy on Aug. 3, added the indoor hardcourt event which will be played in Ostrava from Oct. 19-25.

The tournament will offer $528,500 in prize money and feature a 28-player singles main draw along with a 16-team doubles draw.

It will also offer six spots in the main draw for players competing in a 24-player qualifying draw on Oct. 17-18, giving more lower-ranked players the chance to earn money.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman and Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai/ Editing by Christian Radnedge/Peter Rutherford)