«When politics enters the front door, love slips out the back.» In men’s tennis, the exact opposite holds true. Politics plays along. Basel’s Swiss Indoors is not in sporting terms Switzerland’s isolated bridgehead in world tennis, in politics the adaptable people of Basel are also well positioned at the net. For the first time, the ATP World Tour’s CEO, the Englishman Chris Kermode (photo), has paid a visit to Switzerland’s tennis highpoint. The former player and director of the ATP Finals at London’s O2 Arena is the first European to reach this position in the history of the Association of Tennis Professionals. Kermode was impressed by the event and the extensive range of services available to the general public at the Indoors. The Englishman, who lives at the ATP’s European seat in Monte Carlo, promised Basel tournament director Marc Zimmermann that he would like to return to the 2018 opening ceremony at Basel’s St. Jakobshalle in 2018.
Regarding the oft-quoted package of reforms in the ATP World Tour, the guest observed the rules of diplomacy by letting nothing out of the bag. News has however leaked out that no deep changes will be introduced in 2018. The question remains on the agenda whether the tour should introduce a 750 format between the current 500 and 1,000 formats. A decision on this issue is reported to be fully open.