Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) chief executive Stacey Allaster has revealed that almost 40 cities have expressed an interest in succeeding the Turkish city of Istanbul as the destination for the WTA’s end-of-year championships from 2014.
Istanbul is in the second year of a three-year contract to stage the WTA Championships, which gather together the top eight ranking single’s players in women’s tennis as well as the top four doubles teams. However, the event has been put out to tender for the first time in six years for 2014 and beyond, and Allaster is thrilled with the level of interest since the process was launched in May.
“The event is a global property and there is global interest,” Allaster said. “Almost 40 cities have expressed an interest in the initial stage of the process. We’re incredibly excited with the amount of interest and it shows that the event is stronger than ever.”
The WTA plans to whittle down the list before undertaking site visits and then making a final decision in March 2013. “We haven’t set our sights on short-listing a particular number, but I’d be pleased if four or five cities went forward to the final stage,” Allaster added.
Although the WTA is not divulging the names of interested parties at this stage, cities that have aspirations of hosting the Olympics are among those to have expressed an interest. For more on the tender for the WTA Championships and the latest from CEO Stacey Allaster on the WTA’s commercial strategy, see the August edition of SportBusiness International magazine.
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Allaster hails interest in WTA Championships tender