Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Sofia Kenin are among the massive names coming to Dubai this month as part of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. If you’re a tennis fan you’re going to want to be there – here’s everything you need to know about the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2020.
The tournament starts on Monday (February 17) with the women’s WTA Premier Tournament. The final will be held on Saturday February 23, with the ATP Men’s tournament running from Monday February 24 with the final on Saturday February 29. The Championships started out in 1993, where Karel Novacek lifted the inaugural trophy. And since then all the top names have taken to the court. The first women’s competition was won by Martina Hingis in 2001.
THE WOMEN’S ONES TO WATCH
This year all eyes will be on Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin who is coming to Dubai. The title was her first Grand Slam trophy, and she’s now world number seven, while she was ranked just 37 at the tournament last year. “It has been clear for some time that Sofia Kenin would become a champion, and her performances in Melbourne were a pleasure to watch,” said Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman & CEO, Dubai Duty Free. “We look forward to welcoming her back to Dubai and see if she can repeat her Australian success here in a field that includes all three of the other reigning Grand Slam champions.” Other top names include 2019 Wimbledon champion Simona Halep, Brisbane winner Karolina Pliskova and US Open winner Bianca Anderson. Meanwhile Kim Clijsters has chosen the 20th Anniversary celebrations of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships hosting the WTA Tour to begin her eagerly awaited comeback to the game, after her last match in 2012. “I am really excited to be getting back to the match court. I know it’s a special anniversary for the Dubai Duty Free Championships so it’s an honour to be making my return to the game and debut in Dubai at the same time. I can’t wait to return to the game I love and play in front of the fans again - the support and encouragement that I’ve received since the announcement has been overwhelming.”
THE MEN’S ONES TO WATCH
World-famous tennis star Roger Federer picked up an eighth Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships title, defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4 6-4 to earn the 100th singles title of his career, and he’s coming back to defend it again in 2020. Other popular names taking to the court include 2019 Wimbledon winner Novak Djokovic, Gael Monfils, Karen Khachanov, Roberto Bautista Agut, with Tsitsipas also returning to Dubai. Federer, who has a home in Dubai, said: "I feel very happy here when I'm playing the tournament, no doubt about it. I feel like I do get like somewhat of a home crowd support. Yeah, walking around and stuff, I know my way around. I love taking my car and going to places, going to restaurants, all that stuff. I mean, it depends. Obviously if I would go to the mall at 9pm, not the cleverest move I could make. I know where to go, how to do it."
WHERE YOU’LL WATCH FROM
The 5,000-seat Dubai Tennis Stadium was officially inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in February 1996, and since has been renamed the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium.
HOW TO GET TICKETS
Tickets can be bought from the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium Box Office, which is open from 9am to 9pm, as well as from dubai.platinumlist.net. Prices range from Dhs55 on the opening days, to Dhs475 for men’s finals in the Grandstand (although prime seats extend above that). You can always visit the Tennis Village for free, too, and why not stop by for a pint at The Irish Village after the match? We’ll see you there.
From Dhs55. Feb 17-Feb29. Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, Garhoud, www.dubaidutyfreetennischampionships.com.