John McEnroe and Bjorn Borg – two of the most iconic athletes on the planet – enjoyed a rivalry that transcended sport. In 2008, almost three decades after their last Wimbledon final, the pair met three times on the ATP Champions Tour, thrilling packed crowds with their entertaining rallies.
Since then, many of the world’s most popular champions have renewed their iconic rivalries on the ATP Champions Tour. Whether it’s Andy Roddick and Juan Carlos Ferrero reprising their 2003 US Open final, Patrick Rafter getting revenge on Goran Ivanisevic from their 2001 Wimbledon final, or Spaniards Alex Corretja and Carlos Moya having a laugh during a rematch of their 1998 Roland Garros final, the contrast in playing styles and personalities is still just as gripping to watch.
In recent years, former World No. 1 and six-time Grand Slam singles champion Stefan Edberg, former World No. 1 and 2000 US Open champion Marat Safin, and American Davis Cup heros James Blake and Mardy Fish have all made their debuts on the Champions Tour.
The champions still take great pride in their fitness, reputations and ability to perform, and so the competitiveness and standard of play is incredibly high. While winning is still a major motivation for players that lived off the feeling during their ATP World Tour careers, maturity and a greater understanding of the importance of spectators, media and sponsors has meant that they are able to interact now in a way that they couldn’t before. They effortlessly laugh with fans, hang out with sponsors and open up to the media wherever they go.
Who is playing?
Only a player who has retired from the ATP World Tour circuit and meets one of the following conditions is eligible to compete on the ATP Champions Tour:
- No. 1 during their competitive playing careers
- A Grand Slam singles finalist
- A singles player in a victorious Davis Cup team
Each tournament can also invite two players of its choice to take wild cards.
Winners from every generation
Collectively the ATP Champions Tour delivers more pedigree and success than any other Tour in tennis. Ta play an the ATP Champions Tour, players must be a former Grand Slam winner ar finalist, former World No.1 ar □avis Cup Singles winner.