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Roger and Chinese Dignitaries Open New Tennis Masters Cup Stadium in Shanghai

03.10.2005 | Tennis

ATP press release - Roger Federer joined Tennis Masters Cup organizers and high-ranking Shanghai government officials on Monday to unveil the spectacular new Qi Zhong Centre Court Stadium, site of the Tennis Masters Cup from 2005-2007.

 

“It truly is an amazing stadium, “ said Federer, the two-time defending Tennis Masters Cup champion who flew directly to Shanghai after winning his 24th consecutive final at the Thailand Open in Bangkok. “I am very honored to be here today to see it opened to the world and I am very much looking forward to playing here in November. I know there will be some great tennis matches played here during the Tennis Masters Cup. ”

 

More than 450 fans also attended the ceremony in the 15,000-seat stadium.  Throughout the day Federer met with Shanghai government and sponsor representatives, media and fans.

 

Joining Federer for the official opening were 14 tennis and government officials including Tennis Masters Cup Tournament Director, Mr. Brad Drewett, ITF Vice-President and Tennis Australia Chairman, Mr. Geoff Pollard, Shanghai Vice-Mayor Mr. Yang Xiou Du, Vice-President of the China Tennis Association, Miss Sun Jin Feng, Director of the Minhuang District, Mr. Chen Jin, President of the Shanghai Sports Commission Mr Jin Guoxiang and President of Ba-shi Industrial, Mr. Wang Liqun.

 

Drewett said: “There is no doubt that this stadium will be regarded as one of the great sporting arenas in the world and will be an incredible location to stage the Tennis Masters Cup for the next three years.”

 

Sun Jin Feng said: “I believe that one day the Yao Ming of tennis will play here in this stadium which will be one of history’s great arenas.”

 

The stadium features a unique eight-piece roof that resembles a magnolia flower blooming when opening. The roof takes eight minutes to open or close, but the team responsible for building it—the Shanghai Institute of Architectural Design & Research (SIADR)—spent more than a year researching whether it could be built at all. Said SIADR architect Zhao Chen: “There was no other project like this which could act as a reference point.”

 

More information – including free, downloadable photographs – about Qi Zhong Stadium can be found at the link below.

 

With just over one month remaining before the start of the Tennis Masters Cup Shanghai, which will be held Nov. 13-20, only Federer, Rafael Nadal and Australian Open champion Marat Safin have qualified for the year-end finale. The Race for the five remaining places will be hotly contested over the coming weeks, with Andy Roddick (3rd in the INDESIT ATP 2005 Race) and two-time Tennis Masters Cup champion Lleyton Hewitt (4th) leading the challenge.

 

Three doubles teams have qualified for the Tennis Masters Cup Doubles: Two-time defending champions Bob & Mike Bryan, Roland Garros champions Jonas Bjorkman and Max Mirnyi and the Zimbabwean duo of Wayne Black and Kevin Ullyett. These three teams currently have separated themselves from the pack of other contenders looking for a berth in Shanghai.

 

Below is a look at the Tennis Masters Cup Shanghai contenders (at 3 October):

 

INDESIT ATP 2005 Race

*1st    Federer,Roger/SUI       1245    Two-time defending champion has a 13-1 record at finale

*2nd    Nadal,Rafael/ESP        853     Spanish teen with 10 titles in 2005 will make his TMC debut

3rd     Roddick,Andy/USA        548     The 2003 year-end No. 1 is highest-ranked player yet to qualify

4th     Hewitt,Lleyton/AUS      498     2002 Shanghai champion is closing on fifth TMC berth

5th     Agassi,Andre/USA        455     TMC Houston 2003 runner-up won finale in 1990

6th     Coria,Guillermo/ARG     422     Argentine qualified in Houston in 2003-2004

7th     Davydenko,Nikolay/RUS   378     Hoping to make TMC debut and become 2nd Russian qualifier

*8th    Safin,Marat/RUS 346     Aus. Open winner certain to qualify as 2005 Grand Slam winner

9th     Gaudio,Gaston/ARG       344     Argentine trying to qualify for second straight year

10th    Puerta,Mariano/ARG      322     Roland Garros finalist seeks to make TMC debut

* = Qualified for Tennis Masters Cup

 

 
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10/06/2005 | 05:17 AM
Roger,
I went that meeting.
Also met you at the airport in that morning. I'm one of the three girls who went to the airport to see you arrival and got your signatures

You are so kind and gorgeous.
I'll always love you!!

Daisy
Beijing, China
10/05/2005 | 10:22 PM
Roger,
What a stadium! It was built for a King of Tennis to play in - YOU! Not only do you play like a king, but you are conducting yourself like a good one - dignified, gracious, articulate, classy, and - best of all - you smile, you use humor,
10/05/2005 | 03:13 PM
Roger ,see you in Shanghai this TMc.
Go and claim your crown again
10/05/2005 | 02:43 PM
Wow!!! Magnificent stadium !!! I especially like the magnolia flower-like roof. How great that you were invited at the inauguration ceremony! It`s like it was built for you :) :) :) I hope you`ll live many happy moments there, winning the title for the ne
10/05/2005 | 11:10 AM
It's a great honour for us that you took part in this presrntation! You are simply the best on and off court! But please, take a rest before next challenge!!!
We love you very much and want you to be healthy! Good luck fot the future! Sofia
10/05/2005 | 05:33 AM
I have also bought semifinal and final tickets. I hope to see u again in Shanghai, same as 2002.

Misty
10/05/2005 | 05:25 AM
I am so happy Roger qualified in the Master cup shanghai2005. I am also happy to see this such a great stadium is from my hometown-Shanghai. Good Luck to you Roger. You are the best.
10/05/2005 | 04:48 AM
Wow Margaret our messages are so much alike!! (the first half at least)
The photos are indeed great but a video clip is always a bit better. A nice -but short- one can be found at http://www.eurosport.com/tennis/

10/05/2005 | 04:08 AM
Great! Hope you win in Shanghai!
10/05/2005 | 03:34 AM
Hello Roger
What a wonderful way to celebrate your latest success by opening that great stadium.
No 1 for the 2nd consecutive year--congratulations.
Wonderful photos of you from there--so happy being surrounded by your fans and of course they are so ha
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