Top Flight Tennis in Bangkok
By Jules kay
The PTT Thailand Open returns to Bangkok from 25 September – 3 October. A regular fixture on the ATP tour and widely considered one of Thailand's top annual sporting tournaments
Some of the biggest names in men’s tennis have played in the event, including Thai tennis superstar, Paradorn who competed in the event around the same time as achieving world top 10 status. In fact, the excitement surrounding Paradorn's meteoric rise through the rankings played a large part int the success of the first Thailand Open, but the event has since gone from strength to strength.
In the past seven years, Bangkok has welcomed some of the world's best known male tennis players. The Thai Open roster has included Spain’s Juan Carlos Ferrero, Carlos Moya, big serving American Taylor Den and popular Israeli doubles champions Jonathon Erlich and Andy Ram, who have claimed two doubles titles.
This year's event raises the bar yet higher with the current French Open, Wimbledon and US Open champions in contention. World number 1 Rafael Nadal, and Juan Martin del Potro will head a line-up that also includes Olympic champion Fernando Gonzalez and this year's rising star Ernests Gulbis.
Thai tennis fans have waited a long time to see Nadal on the court and his appearance couldn't have come at a better time. Having recently claimed both the French Open and Wimbledon titles once again, he is on top form and therefore poised to delight the crowd.
Nadal’s main competition is likely to come from Argentinian Juan Martin del Potro who is returning to the ATP World Tour after undergoing wrist surgery early in the year. Chilean Fernando Gonzalez will be playing in the event for the first time this year. He is known for having one of the biggest forehands in the game, which guarantees plenty of on court action. Gonzalez has claimed 11 ATP Tour titles and previously achieved a world ranking of 5. Another draw will undoubtedly be Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis who has made the biggest gain on the ATP Top 100 list year. At last year’s PTT Thailand Open Gulbis he was ranked outside the top 100 but is currently ranked at #28. His win over Roger Federer at this year’s Rome Masters 1000 stands out as one of the best matches of the year.
With 28 big name tennis stars competing in this year’s event and a 16-team doubles draw.The PTT Thai Open is poised to offer some of the best tennis Thailand has seen. To add even more spice to the games, he ball girls for once again be selected from contestants in the Miss Thailand World 2010 pageant. The tournament will take place at Impact Arena, Muang Thong Thani from 25 September to 3 October. Sponsors other than PTT include Turkish Airlines, Lacoste, Singha Beer.