James Blake To Make Royal Albert Hall Debut; Gonzalez To Defend Title
26th August, 2015
Champions Tennis – James Blake To Make Royal Albert Hall Debut; Gonzalez To Defend Title
Former World No.4 James Blake will make his debut in Champions Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall, 2-6 December. The American will take on Fernando Gonzalez, who will seek a title defence, and Tim Henman at the iconic venue in London.
John McEnroe is also part of the event, which is staged and owned by IMG, the global leader in sports, fashion, events and media.
‘It’s a huge thrill to be coming to London for Champions Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall,’ said Blake. ‘All of the players talk about what a beautiful venue it is and it will be great to play in front of British crowds against some of my old rivals.’
During his career, Blake won ten titles and reached the final of the ATP World Tour Finals in 2006. He also advanced to the semi-finals at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, losing to eventual silver medallist Gonzalez. Blake is a two time US Open quarterfinalist and is the author of a successful autobiography ‘Breaking Back: How I Lost Everything And Won Back My Life’ in 2008.
Gonzalez won Olympic gold in the doubles in Athens 2004 to go with his silver in singles in Beijing 2008. Now 35, he still possesses one of the most powerful forehands in tennis history. It helped him reach the Australian Open final in 2007, where he defeated Juan Martin Del Potro, Lleyton Hewitt, James Blake, Rafael Nadal and Tommy Haas in successive matches to reach the final, losing to then World No.1 Roger Federer. Later that year, Gonzalez, who reached a career-high ranking of World No.5, defeated Federer at the ATP World Tour Finals.
“After you retire, you never think you are going to be back on a court like the one at the Royal Albert Hall, so it is a pleasure for me to come back to London to defend my title,” said Gonzalez.
Champions Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall is the season-finale to the ATP Champions Tour and is played over five days, with two sessions each day – one in the afternoon, one in the evening.
Champions Tennis has enjoyed record ticket sales for 2015 and tickets are available from £23.50 at www.championstennis.co.uk/tickets/ or by calling the Royal Albert Hall box office on +44 (0) 20 7070 4404. Hospitality packages are available via www.championstennis.co.uk/hospitality/ or by calling +44 (0) 20 8233 5854.
Notes to Editors
IMG is a global leader in sports, events, media and fashion, operating in more than 25 countries. The company represents and manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages thousands of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is the world’s largest independent producer and distributor of sports media. IMG also specializes in sports training; league development; and marketing, media and licensing for brands, sports organizations and collegiate institutions. In 2014, IMG was acquired by WME, the world’s leading entertainment agency, to form WME | IMG.
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