x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

A better League is promised for next season

Tennis Emirates have promised an explanded and richer National League when the new season starts in October.

DUBAI // Tennis Emirates have promised an explanded and richer National League when the new season starts in October. The Falak Holding UAE National Tennis League finished yesterday with Al Wasl Sports Club defeating Dubai Police Club to win the title. Twelve teams participated in the revamped championship, for a total prize money of Dh15,000, with the winning team taking home Dh8,000. But organisers are promising double the number of teams will compete for a bigger prize fund next season.

"The league, just like everything else in the past year, we have revamped through the partnership between Tennis Emirates and MediaPro, and we have made quite a few changes," said Eric Gottschalk, the managing director of MediaPro, who hold the marketing and management rights of the Tennis Association. "First of all, we put prize money in the league and that allows us to have the best players in the country play. Omar Behrouzian, the No 1 player, has usually not played in the last few years.

"It also helped to make the league more competitive and it has suddenly cut down all the walkovers. People are much more committed to play. "We have way more teams playing this year than last year. "What we have done is created a competitive league, which we call the National League. It is consisting of two singles and a doubles match. "And then we kept the social part of the league, which we call the UAE Doubles League.

"You play two doubles, so you have four players. So anyone who wants to play a little bit of competition can find its place now. "From next year, definitely we are going to have double the number of teams. The 12 teams worked well, but there is no reason not to have 24 teams. We are looking to give a bit more prize money." arizvi@thenational.ae