The curtain had fallen on another ASB Classic in Auckland in January and it was a wide open event with no seeds reaching the semi-final in the men’s draw, leaving Cameron Norrie and Tennys Sandgren to fight for the title.
The next year’s edition of the ATP 250 tournament will take place between two big events, the ATP Cup and the Australian Open and the organizers are ready to undergo the improvements on the ASB Tennis Arena, offering the crowd more enjoyable experience during the matches.
At a committee meeting, Auckland councilors approved a $5.5 million funding package to upgrade the main ASB Tennis Arena, securing the upgrade that includes redeveloping of two stands to bring the capacity to 3,500. To stay on the tennis map in the years to come, the organizers of the Auckland Open had to make some significant changes and improve the facilities, with a retractable roof standing the next in line in some six or seven years.
Redevelopment of the west and south stands will start on April 1 and everything should be completed in seven months, with the construction of other two stands and a retractable roof having to wait until 2023 and 2026 respectively.
“This is not just a facility for international events, it’s a place Kiwi tennis players can aspire to play at someday,” Councillor Wayne Walker said. “Tennis is a diverse sport which people of all backgrounds participate in.
This redevelopment ticks all the boxes.” “International competition to host tournaments is fierce and Auckland is currently fending off challenges from other cities for the rights to host the tournaments,” Tennis Auckland chief executive Marcus Reynolds said.
“We’re under threat from wealthier hosts with significant government backing. Increasing seating capacity to 3500 is critical to Tennis Auckland’s future bids to secure tournaments. ASB Classic tournaments result in the economic benefit of over $11.95m a year to Auckland, made up of operating costs spent with local suppliers, food and beverage spend during the tournaments and visitation impact.”