The National Bank Open, formerly Rogers Cup

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BRISEBOIS: TENNIS FANS STAY TRUE TO THE MAJOR TOURNAMENTS, INCLUDING MONTRÉAL

July 8, 2021
Ambiance on the court

TENNIS FANS STAY TRUE TO THE MAJOR TOURNAMENTS, INCLUDING MONTRÉAL

I was watching Wimbledon this week and heard a BBC commentator mention how much British fans loved the tournament, even with all the restrictions and health measures. I don’t doubt it. Still, there are true champions in that particular category right here.

Of the all too few inspiring stories to come out of the tennis world since its pandemic halt in March 2020, there’s an extraordinary one happening in Canada.

When Rogers Cup—now National Bank Open—was cancelled last year, it had already brought in $7 million in ticket sales.

How much do you think is left in the register today with the ticket office about to reopen for this summer’s event and the refunds offered to 2020 ticket holders?

So much that tournament director Eugène Lapierre had to check the numbers twice.

Fans chose en masse to defer their tickets, leaving $6.5 million in the till.

“I’m impressed, too!” admitted Eugène Lapierre.

That’s a huge comfort, even if it doesn’t offset all the losses after last year’s cancellations in Montréal and Toronto. And let’s not forget that the sums generated by Canada’s leading events support the Félixes, Biancas and Shapos of tomorrow.  

HERE WE GO!

As I mentioned, the ticket office opens this week. Series and box ticket holders have priority, and then the sale will open to the public.

1 500 MORE THAN THE BELL CENTRE

IGA Stadium got the go-ahead from public health authorities to host 5 000 spectators because the tournament is played outdoors, while the Habs were limited to 3 500. Health Canada is expected to endorse the decision.  

450 IN THE BUBBLE

450: the number of players (and their teams) and international and local staff in the bubble.

SWITCH UP

Now that the title and presenting sponsors have switched roles, National Bank Court becomes Rogers Court.

DON’T MISS IT

Photo: Tennis Canada

Tune in on Wednesday, July 14 when the National Bank Open releases the list of competitors.

Last I heard, Naomi Osaka’s name was still on it.  

LET’S GO, SHAPO!

Photo: Martin Sidorjak

A word of encouragement for Denis Shapovalov who reached the semi-finals yesterday in Wimbledon after a brilliant match against Karen Khachanov (6-4, 3-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4). He will now be facing Novak Djokovic in order to participate in the grand final. As for Félix Auger-Aliassime, the Montrealer fought valiantly in his quarters game against Matteo Berrettini, but ultimately lost in four sets 6-3,-5-7,-7-5 and-6-3. Still, a great run for our Canadians at the tournament and it’s not over! Let’s go Shapo!

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