Recent reports suggest that one of the men’s top professional football division of the Spanish football league system, La Liga is the official sponsor of tennis’ updated Davis Cup competition for the consecutive four years. The sponsorship deal was confirmed on Thursday.
The Davis Cup was started in 1900 and is one of the biggest annual international team tournament in sport, but in recent years it is garnering less spectators as many big players are dropping out. To gain more viewers, International Tennis Federation (ITF) entered into a contract for twenty-five years for three billion in 2018 with an investment group Kosmos by Barcelona footballer Gerard Pique.
Now it will include seven days, World Cup-style knockout event participated by eighteen countries towards the end of the regular season. 2019’s finals will take place in November in Madrid. Talking about the latest sponsorship deal, David Haggarty who is ITF’s President stated that the cross-sport partnership with La Liga is quite new for Davis Cup. This will increase their reach to not just tennis fans but also people who are passionate about other sports. As of now, no details about money has been disclosed.
It is reported that promotion of Davis Cup will be done by La Liga through international broadcasts in two hundred countries while the league matches are on in the whole month of October. They have teamed up for the Davis Cup qualifiers, which will start on February second, wherein twelve winners will book their places at the finals in Madrid with qualified teams Great Britain, Croatia, Argentina, France, Spain, and the United States.
Spain’s 2016 Davis Cup tie in India was sponsored by La Liga and in 2018 it revealed an alliance deal with Renault’s Formula 1 team. Furthermore, La Liga also supports sixty-four sporting federations of Spain.
La Liga’s international business development director, Oscar Mayo stated that they are excited to enter into an agreement with Kosmos Tennis as it provides an excellent prospect to link their brand and of their clubs with an international sport & entertainment icon.
He further added that Spain being their home market, will be the host of the starting two editions of Davis Cup Finals and other strategic markets for them are being taken into account to host future events, has been crucial in their decision to say yes to this sponsorship agreement.
However, the upgradation of the event news didn’t go down well with former world number one Lleyton Hewitt, who criticized Pique’s involvement. Talking about the changes, Hewitt stated it is absurd because Pique has no idea about tennis and it will be as him asking to change things for the Champions League. He further added that organizing it at one place is ludicrous and he doesn’t think a lot of top players will take part.