Tennis Icon Roger Federer and compatriot Belinda Bencic will return to Western Australia for the Mastercard Hopman Cup in 2018.
Federer and Bencic starred in three record-breaking sessions at the event this year, with 13,917 fans turning out for the tie between Switzerland and France. It is, by far, the biggest tennis crowd in WA history.
Apart from the figures shared above, an additional 6000 people flocked to Perth Arena to welcome Federer at an open practice session to celebrate his return to the tournament for the first time in 15 years, and his comeback to tennis after six months out of the game.
Tennis Superstar and eighteen-time Grand Slam champion, Federer, attributes his Australian Open success in part to the great preparation he enjoyed at the Hopman Cup and aims to replicate it for 2018.
Speaking about the tournament, Federer said, “I’m very happy to be coming back [to the Hopman Cup] because I had the best time on and off the court.”
Further added Federer, currently world No.5 and reigning Australian Open champion, “The fans were absolutely amazing, there were I think about 6000 people at my first practice which I couldn’t believe, it was almost surreal walking in to the stadium.”
During their stay at the Western Australia, the Federer family visited tourist attractions including Rottnest Island and Swan Valley, while Roger joined junior tennis players and surf lifesavers for an impromptu beach tennis match at Cottesloe Beach and met Casper the joey while taking in the view at South Perth.
Rejuvenated with the off court activities, Federer said, “Off court we had a tonne of activities. My family and I had the best time. It was just a great, relaxing start to the year. Plus I played some really good tennis and I can’t wait to play again in Perth.”
Federer will make his fourth appearance at the tournament.
Also featuring with him at the tournament, twenty-year-old Bencic, a former world No.7 who made the US Open quarterfinals at the age of 17 in 2014, is also excited about returning to Perth next year.
“The Hopman Cup was amazing for me earlier this year, I enjoyed every second,” Bencic said.
Adding further, Bencic continued, “Playing with Roger was obviously a dream come true and I learned so much from him during that week on and off court. The crowd was unreal too so I hope that everyone will come back again and support Switzerland.”
Speaking about the development, Mastercard Hopman Cup Tournament Director Paul Kilderry said, “We’re extremely excited that Roger Federer and Belinda Bencic have decided to return to Perth to start the 2018 season with us. The energy and atmosphere at the 2017 tournament was unbelievable, with record crowds, broadcast coverage and digital traffic, we are eager to see how next year will unfold.”
Concluding his statement, the TD added, “The opportunity to see Roger, one of the greatest players of all time, back in Perth is unprecedented and we hope to see Western Australia come out in full force to support the Switzerland team.”
In the 2017 edition, a total of 103,167 fans attended the Mastercard Hopman Cup, the second highest attendance in the event’s history.
In January the State Government of Western Australia, through Tourism WA, announced support for the Mastercard Hopman Cup for at least five more years, extending the relationship to 2022.