Matches Held at Tseung Kwan O Velodrome on World Tennis Day 3 March
13 January 2014
HONG KONG – World class tennis stars will come to Hong Kong for the second annual BNP Paribas Showdown which will be held as part of World Tennis Day on 3 March at the new Tseung Kwan O Velodrome.
Li Na, Asia’s first Grand Slam champion, will take on former US Open champion Sam Stosur of Australia in one match at the BNP Paribas Showdown. The other match will feature former No. 1 and two-time Grand Slam champion Lleyton Hewitt taking on current Top 10 player Tomas Berdych.
Tickets for the 2014 BNP Paribas Showdown in Hong Kong are on sale now at HK Ticketing Outlets located at all Tom Lee Stores, HKCEC, HKAPA and Fringe Club. Tickets may also be purchased online at www.hkticketing.com or by calling the HK Ticketing Ticket Purchase Hotline at 31 288 288 from 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. daily.
BNP Paribas, a global leader in banking and financial services and the world No. 1 tennis partner, is supporting this event again this year as title sponsor.
“Once more, BNP Paribas is proud to bring the best of tennis to Asia by supporting this outstanding sporting event in 2014, as it does with the same acclaimed tennis event in New York. We are excited to share our passion and enthusiasm for tennis with the fans in Hong Kong,” said Paul Yang, Chief Executive Officer for BNP Paribas Hong Kong.
The BNP Paribas Showdown is part of the second annual World Tennis Day, a global celebration of tennis that includes the BNP Paribas Showdown events in Hong Kong and New York City plus the World Tennis Day Showdown in London. In addition, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and its member nations will host participation events such as clinics and open houses at clubs around the world. In 2013, 58 nations held World Tennis Day participation events.
“The popularity of tennis in Asia is the reason we brought the BNP Paribas Showdown to Hong Kong when starting World Tennis Day in 2013,” said Jerry Solomon, president of StarGames, the Showdown’s producer. “We had a successful event last year, and with today’s stars, Li, Sam, Tomas and Lleyton, we look forward to another great night of tennis.”
Li is the No. 4 ranked player on the WTA Tour. The 31-year-old from China owns eight career titles, highlighted by her historic victory at the 2011 French Open. In 2013, she reached the Australian Open final for the second time in her career and closed the season by finishing as runner-up at the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships in Istanbul. She started 2014 at a career high ranking of No. 4 and won the title at the opening week WTA event in Shenzhen.
“It is incredible how much tennis has grown in Asia,” said Li. “I always look forward to playing in Asia and getting the support from the crowd. I hope playing on World Tennis Day means more people will go out and try playing tennis.”
Stosur won the 2011 US Open, beating Serena Williams in the final. She owns five career titles, including two that she claimed in 2013. In singles, Stosur has been ranked as high as No. 4 in the world, and she spent 61 weeks ranked No. 1 in doubles. Stosur owns two Grand Slam doubles titles as well as two Grand Slam mixed doubles titles.
On the WTA Tour, Stosur has defeated Li in all six of their career meetings.
Berdych is the No. 7 ranked player on the ATP World Tour, and 2013 marked his fourth straight Top 10 season. He has won eight career titles and reached the finals 11 other times, including at Wimbledon in 2010. He has helped the Czech Republic to win back-to-back Davis Cup titles.
Hewitt spent 80 weeks ranked No. 1 on the ATP World Tour after becoming the youngest to reach the top spot as a 20-year-old in 2001. He has won 29 career titles, including one in Brisbane to open the 2014 season where he defeated Roger Federer in the final. He has won two Grand Slam titles – 2001 US Open and 2002 Wimbledon. He has been a Grand Slam finalist on two other occasions and has twice been a member of a winning Australian Davis Cup team.
“Tomas is playing well right now so playing him will be a good test for me,” said Hewitt. “I have enjoyed playing in Asia and look forward to being in Hong Kong on World Tennis Day.”
Berdych has won both career ATP meetings against Hewitt.
The BNP Paribas Showdown in Hong Kong is one of three Showdown events held on World Tennis Day.
The BNP Paribas Showdown at Madison Square Garden in New York, Andy Murray will play Novak Djokovic and the Bryan Brothers, Bob and Mike, will face the McEnroes, John and Patrick.
The World Tennis Day Showdown at Earls Court in London, Pat Cash will play Ivan Lendl and Andre Agassi will take on Pete Sampras.
World Tennis Day was founded in 2013 as a joint effort between StarGames Inc. and the International Tennis Federation (ITF). Designed to promote playing opportunities around the world, the ITF uses the occasion to engage its member nations to host events to expose more people to tennis. In its first year, 58 countries hosted such events. In addition, StarGames produces Showdown events with current and former professional players to further celebrate the sport. In 2014, New York City will hosts its seventh Showdown, Hong Kong will have its second while London will play host to a Showdown event for the first time. Every Showdown participant has either been ranked as No. 1 in the World or reached a Grand Slam final in their career, if not both. More information can be found at www.WorldTennisDay.com.
StarGames, LLC is a fully integrated sports marketing, management and entertainment company based outside of Boston. Founded in 1994, StarGames provides athlete representation in a broad spectrum of sports, produces live events and television programs while also providing operational support for the Ivan Lendl Junior Tennis Academy in Hilton Head, S.C. The client representation division currently works with Ivan Lendl and Nancy Kerrigan. The television division produces live events as well as the magazine style program “World of Tennis,” which is in its fourth season. The events division primarily works in figure skating and tennis. Most notably, it produces World Tennis Day, an annual celebration of tennis that includes grassroots participation events globally as well as a series of marquee Showdown events that include current and former professional players. In 2013, through the International Tennis Federation, 58 nations held participation events. In 2014, the seventh annual Showdown in New York City will be held at Madison Square Garden, Hong Kong will host its second event while London hosts an event for the first time. More information can be found at www.stargamesinc.com.
About BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas (www.bnpparibas.com) has a presence in nearly 80 countries with 190,000 employees, including 145,000 in Europe. It ranks highly in its three core activities: Retail Banking, Investment Solutions and Corporate & Investment Banking. In Europe, the Group has four domestic markets (Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg) and BNP Paribas Personal Finance is the leader in consumer lending. BNP Paribas is rolling out its integrated retail banking model across Mediterranean basin countries, in Turkey, in Eastern Europe and a large network in the western part of the United States. In its Corporate & Investment Banking and Investment Solutions activities, BNP Paribas also enjoys top positions in Europe, a strong presence in the Americas and solid and fast-growing businesses in Asia-Pacific.
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