Perennial top ten to make debut at ASB Classic
One of the most successful players over the last decade, Tomas Berdych, will make his debut at the ASB Classic in 2019.
A long-time target for organisers, Berdych has been at the top of the men’s game since breaking in to the World’s top 10 in 2007. He lays claim to be one of only three players to have beaten all members of the big four (Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray) at Grand Slams. He has reached at the semi-finals at all four Grand Slams and made a memorable run to the final of Wimbledon in 2010 beating Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic en route to a showdown with Rafael Nadal in the final.
The Czech, who peaked at world number four, sits ninth on the all-time prize money list for male players and has captured 13 ATP titles.
Berdych started his 2018 season in supreme form at the tie-break tens event in the lead up to the Australian Open beating Nick Kyrgios, Milos Raonic and Rafael Nadal to win the title. He backed that up having beaten Juan Martin del Potro in the round of 16 to set up another Grand Slam quarter final showdown against Federer.
Organisers are thrilled to have finally secured the big serving Berdych.
“This has been a long time coming. We have chased Tomas every year that I have been Tournament Director and desperately wanted to get him out here. He has quite possibly been the best player behind the big four. In any other era he would be a multiple Grand Slam Champion. We can’t wait to see him finally play here” said Tournament Director Karl Budge.
A back injury has seen him side lined since before Wimbledon, meaning a refreshed Berdych will commence his year in Auckland looking to regain his normal standing inside the world’s top ten.
The 33 year old is excited to be coming to the City of Sails for the first time.
“I have wanted to play the ASB Classic for a long time. Every year I hear so many good things and I have always wanted to play. I have had a good break and my body is feeling really good. I am looking forward to seeing Auckland for the first time”.
As one of the biggest servers on tour with a booming forehand, Berdych will enter the ASB Classic as one of the favourites.
“We know Tomas’ level. You don’t get almost 20 wins over the big four in a career without being at the very top of the game. He is a class act and this is huge for us” continued Budge.
With two former champions in John Isner and Roberto Bautista-Agut already confirmed alongside Australian Open semi-finalist Hyeon Chung, the Men’s field is shaping up to be one of the strongest in recent memory. With more big names to come, 2019 looks set to be a huge summer of tennis.
The ASB Classic will span for two weeks; the women's tournament kicking off on December 31 to January 6 followed by the men’s tournament from January the 7 to 12. Tickets are available for purchase through Ticketek either online, over the phone on (0800 842 538) or in person at one of the agencies listed on the event website.