New $15 million dollar team competition to launch 2020 tennis season

Serbia's Novak Djokovic in action during his group stage match against Germany's Alexander Zverev. Andrew Couldridge Action Images via Reuters

Speaking on Wednesday, world No 1 Novak Djokovic had voiced his fears about the future of the 118-year-old Davis Cup competition, claiming two similar events in the space of six weeks was "not sustainable".

Obviously we have the Davis Cup, a historical team event, but now we have the ATP Cup that is definitely going to be right up there from a players' perspective.

"If you do events do it big", Kermode said, adding that timing wasn't a factor for the ATP Cup given that it exists within the framework of the Tour.

On Thursday the ATP's chief Chris Kermode and Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley, together with ATP Player Council President Djokovic, will hold a news conference in London to launch the World Team Cup which is set to start in January 2020.

There will be group matches taking place in three as yet unnamed Australian cities before a final, most likely in Sydney, with a week to spare before the season's first Grand Slam begins.

Kosmos has committed $41m for each of the next two seasons to run the new Davis Cup - $82m in all, that is - and they are not ready to rip their model up and start collaborating at this stage. "I'm really, really confident that down the line we will find a resolution for this".

Chris Kermode, ATP Executive Chairman and President, said the team event was part of the Tour's attempt to grow the sport, and has been in the woodworks for nearly five years. "I honestly don't think it's good for the sport".

This will see 18 nations competing in a single event in a single week.

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"We all know it's complicated, we have 64 (ATP) events and we have the Slams, it's a lot of tennis".

"We'll make sure in 2020 we run a great event and we will do whatever we can in partnership with the Tour and others to ensure the Davis Cup is also a magnificent global event".

"From what I've heard, different sides in this sport, they all want to have one event because it's over-saturated with different cups, different events".

"We have to try to focus on quality rather than quantity".

Zverev, John Isner, Alex de Minaur, Kei Nishikori, Karen Khachanov, Roger Federer, Jamie Murray, Kyle Edmund, Taylor Fritz, Kevin Anderson, Dominic Thiem, Frances Tiafoe, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Marin Cilic all appeared in the video too, in support of the ATP Cup. But I think it's time to have a fresh look. "Whether I think the structure of the ATP specifically can be better, I actually do". I reckon 90 to 95 per cent of the players will still want to play both events because of the financial rewards.

"The issue is that our season is way too long".

"You can point to many, in some cases sports have three or four team events that are successful so this is not unique for the ATP and the sport to have several team events".

Other experiments include sudden death deuce - which has been a feature on the ATP doubles tour for over 10 years - communication with coaches via headset, electronic line calling and a rack at the back of the court so it becomes the player's responsibility to collect their towel, not the ball kids.

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