The 2019 edition of Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Montreal will kick-off with bang as the IGA Family Weekend will take place from Friday, August 2 to Sunday, August 4 beginning at 10 am. For the occasion, the tournament will open its doors to the public so that fans can watch the best players in the world compete in qualifying matches and practice for free. The fun does not stop with the tennis, as there are a multitude of family-friendly activities being offered throughout the weekend. A ball hockey challenge and a celebrity tournament will also take place during this entertainment-filled weekend.
Practices and qualifying matches
As of Friday, August 2, fans will be able to attend the practice sessions of the best players on the ATP tour, including our last two Rogers Cup champions in Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev, who have both touched down in Montreal. All the outdoor courts will be accessible to the public, including Centre Court. There will also be a number of world class players competing in the qualifying matches on Saturday and Sunday, names such as Feliciano Lopez and the 2017 semi-finalist Robin Haase; as well as rising star Reilly Opelka who won his first ATP title earlier this year at the New York Open, defeating Canadian Brayden Schnur in the final. Spectators will be eager to welcome local fan-favourites Denis Shapovalov and Félix Auger-Aliassime, the latter who will be competing for the first time in his home tournament.
40th Anniversary Conference
This year, Tennis Canada is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Montreal. To mark the occasion, numerous initiatives have been organized. Fans will be invited to attend a conference which will touch on the evolution of the tournament. In the context of this conference, which will take place on Friday, August 2 at 2:30 p.m. in the BMW VIP lounge, tournament directors, sponsors and players, including Stan Wawrinka, will share their best memories and anecdotes from the Montreal tournament.
The stars of the ATP will take on professional hockey players
The ever-popular Ball Hockey Challenge presented by Knapper will be back again this year, as a number of hockey players are set to compete against ATP players. Xavier Bernard and Nicholas Aube-Kubel will be joined by members of the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association (PWHPA), Karell Emard, Marie-Soleil Deschênes, Geneviène Bannon and Melanie Desroches. In collaboration with Groupe MVP, a number of former players will also be back in action, as Francis Bouillon, Steve Bégin and Mathieu Dandenault are set to compete. The fun begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday, August 3 on the National Bank Court.
The Other Cup – The Celebrity Cup
This year also marks the first edition of The Other Cup – The Celebrity Cup, a tournament that will pit local celebrities against each other in a very competitive environment. The quarter-finals and semi-finals of this event will be played on the National Bank Court on Sunday, August 4. The two finalists will then go head-to-head for a chance to lift the trophy on Centre Court on Saturday, August 10. The six celebrities facing-off will be Sébastien Benoît, Alexandre Barrette, Jean-Thomas Jobin, Marianna Mazza, Maxence Parrot and Alex Burrows.
Feature photo: Tennis Canada / Patrice