Tennis chief claims bosses ‘don’t tell everyone what’s happening’ in Saudi talks – Football News

Tennis chief claims bosses ‘don’t tell everyone what’s happening’ in Saudi talks

The president of the French Tennis Federation has had his say on Saudi Arabia’s increasing involvement in tennis. The nation is set to hold the WTA Finals this year and the Public Investment Fund has already signed lucrative deals with the ATP and WTA.

Gilles Moretton revealed that there were plenty of talks going on behind the scenes with the two tours and the Grand Slams.

But the French tennis boss admitted that those involved do not to “tell everyone what’s happening”.

After making waves in football and golf, Saudi Arabia has set its sights on tennis. The nation has already staged exhibition matches and has deals to host both the Next Gen ATP Finals and the WTA Finals.

Both tours have already signed partnerships with the PIF, with Saudi’s sovereign wealth fund becoming the naming sponsor for the ATP and WTA rankings and appearing on the sponsor boards at several big tournaments. There have been reports that the Saudis could get even more involved, offering millions in a takeover bid.

And the FFT president confessed that there were plenty of meetings going on behind the scenes as he shared his delight at the expression of interest from Saudi Arabia. “My opinion on what’s happening now, our sport is a huge sport, and I’m very happy that countries like Saudi Arabia are interested about tennis,” Moretton said on Sunday.

Speaking at the French Open, he said that tennis chiefs wouldn’t share everything from the private talks. He continued: “We are all together. I mean, the Slams, ATP, WTA meeting, we don’t tell everyone what’s happening, but we are working on it.

“Our objective, we all have the same objective. It’s how can we increase, improve our sport for our worldwide fans. So that’s it. So we are trying to, and we all are concerned. We all feel like there is probably a few changes to make. So let’s work.”

While tennis is fragmented, with the ATP, WTA, ITF and four Grand Slams all having a piece of the pie, Moretton said everyone was working together when it came to the Saudi meetings. “That’s what I will say, and we are working on it,” he added.

“We had meetings. You can see the slams, we are very close, all four, and also from past member, we are still close to the tour, very close to the players, very concerned about the future of tennis. So we are working on it. That’s it.”

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