WTA Statement Regarding Brad Drewett
Published May 03, 2013 12:00
Below is a statement regarding the news of ATP Executive Chairman & President Brad Drewett passing away from Motor Neurone Disease (also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease).
WTA STATEMENT REGARDING BRAD DREWETT
"Brad was an incredibly warm human being and a dedicated family man. He also was always an inspiring leader. Today the entire tennis community mourns the loss of a great friend and colleague. Brad's contributions as a player and visionary leader make him one of the greatest in making tennis the popular, worldwide sport it is today. The recent prize money increases with the Grand Slams are perfect examples of Brad's brilliant strategic management, and another example of how much he cared about our athletes and the sport's long-term growth. His legacy as a leader, as a person, and as a father who always put his family first, will have an everlasting impact on tennis. Our prayers go out to his wife Jo and his children Jack, Ally, Joe and Tom, and to the entire ATP family."
Born in New South Wales, Australia in 1958, Drewett was a skilful left-hander player, who, during a 13-year career, reached a career-high ranking of No.34, as well as cracking the Top 20 in doubles.
After retiring, he continued his association with the ATP in a number of roles, including as Managing Director of the Asia-Pacific Region, where he made great strides in spreading the sport's reach, particularly in China.
In January 2012, he succeeded Adam Helfant in the tour's top job, taking advantage of his inside knowledge and contacts, creating a rare consensus among the players. Through this unity, the ATP were able to pressurize the Grand Slams into increasing prize money, especially for the lower-ranked players.
"We are deeply saddened to hear the news of the passing of our dear friend and leader, Brad Drewett," Roger Federer said. "He was a great player, a tremendous ATP CEO and most importantly an amazing friend to all of us.
"The sport of tennis has lost a great figure today, but we will ensure his legacy and contributions to our sport remain part of the ATP's fabric for years to come."
Drewett leaves behind his wife, Joanne, and their four children, Jack, Ally, Joe and Tom.