ST. PETERSBURG, FL, USA - The WTA Board Of Directors has approved a new International-level grass court event in Mallorca, Spain, set to make its debut on the WTA calendar two years from now.
The event will be staged by e|motion management GmbH at a multi-purpose-built facility. In 2016, Mallorca will join Birmingham in the second week of the three week grass court swing, resulting in five WTA grass court tournaments in the lead-up to Wimbledon. An experienced sports and events promoter in Germany, e|motion currently manages the ATP World Tour 250 event in Stuttgart, including when the event becomes a grass court tournament in Stuttgart beginning in 2015.
The venue will feature five permanent natural grass courts and world class facilities, including a retail development and tennis academy. The construction and maintenance of the courts will be done in collaboration with The All England Lawn Tennis Club, which has been a prime supporter in the project.
Richard Lewis, CEO of The All England Lawn Tennis Club and Wimbledon, said: "I am delighted to welcome today's announcement of the prospect of a new event in Mallorca and wish to thank the WTA, Palma Council and e|motion for their support of grass court tennis and their considerable efforts in creating an exciting new event for players and fans to enjoy. The Aegon Classic in Birmingham is already a successful, well-established and growing event and having a second event in week two will be another important step in achieving our vision of a significantly strengthened grass court season."
The 2015 and 2016 grass court calendars are as follows as of now:
Week of June 8: Nottingham (International) & 's-Hertogenbosch (International)
Week of June 15: Birmingham (Premier)
Week of June 22: Eastbourne (Premier)
Weeks of June 29 & July 6: Wimbledon (Grand Slam)
Week of June 6: Nottingham (International) & 's-Hertogenbosch (International)
Week of June 13: Birmingham (Premier) & Mallorca (International)
Week of June 20: Eastbourne (Premier)
Weeks of June 27 & July 4: Wimbledon (Grand Slam)
"With the grass court season set to expand next year, it was important for the WTA to provide players and fans alike with a fresh opportunity to experience the expanded grass court tennis season," Stacey Allaster, the Chairman & CEO of the WTA, said of Monday's news of the addition of Mallorca. "Thanks to the cooperation of The All England Lawn Tennis Club, the WTA Board of Directors and e|motion management, the event in Mallorca will strengthen the grass court season leading up to Wimbledon."
Edwin Weindorfer, CEO and Founder of e|motion management, which will stage the tournament, said: "We are very excited about the great opportunity to join the WTA with a new tournament in Mallorca, Spain. Besides thanking the WTA and their board for their trust and committment to provide us with the licence and sanction of this new event, we wanted to further thank The All England Lawn Tennis Club for their ongoing support and vision for another grass court tournament in continental Europe."
Peer Zebergs, the newly appointed Tournament Director for the event, added: "The island of Mallorca is known for its sports celebrities and great sporting events. This WTA International tournament will increase the sports portfolio in Mallorca and it will be an important factor for tourism to millions of foreign visitors and the local population in Palma and Mallorca in the coming years."