At stake at the 38th edition of the long-standing tournament is besides the prize money a Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet as the main prize for the winner. And the attractive supporting programme of events includes a real highlight – an exhibition match featuring the US tennis legend Andre Agassi.
The WTA Tour players voted the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix as their favourite tournament in its category (Premier 700) in 2014 – for the sixth time since 2007. It is an honour particularly valued by Porsche. “It comes from the players and is an indication of just how much they love coming here,” Markus Günthardt said. “For us it proof of the trust they have in us and also spurs us on to keep making our tournament a little bit better every year.”
There is however not a lot of room for improvement which can be seen by a look at the entry list. Nine Top 10 players plus another six from the Top 20 – it is normally the second week of a Grand Slam. “Our line-up includes the crème de la crème of women’s tennis,” said Markus Günthardt.
In addition to the title holder Maria Sharapova from Russia, spectators in the Porsche Arena can look forward to other Top 10 stars – namely last year’s runner-up Ana Ivanovic (Serbia), Simona Halep (Romania), Eugenie Bouchard (Canada), Petra Kvitova (Czech Republic), Caroline Wozniacki (Denmark), Agnieszka Radwanska (Poland), Ekaterina Makarova (Russia) and Andrea Petkovic (Germany). Completing the starstudded field is the Porsche Brand Ambassador Angelique Kerber (Germany). Markus Günthardt is satisfied, “It doesn’t come much better.”
Supported by Porsche and the former world class player Anke Huber as the Operating Tournament Director, Markus Günthardt has developed the longestablished Stuttgart event into a standout tournament on the WTA Tour since taking up the reins in 2005. It is something that not only delights the players. Stacey Allaster, the WTA CEO and a very welcome guest in Stuttgart, is also full of praise: “The Porsche Tennis Grand Prix sets standards in every area.”
For the Porsche Team Germany players, the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix is a good opportunity to appear in front of their fans for a second time in Stuttgart this year after the successful first round Fed Cup tie against Australia. Over the qualifying weekend, they will play Russia in Sochi for a place in the Fed Cup final – afterwards it will be a case of Angelique Kerber and teammates Andrea Petkovic, Julia Görges and Sabine Lisicki taking the quickest possible means of transport to the Porsche Arena.
Mona Barthel and Annika Beck will be looking to secure a main draw berth via qualifying as will the up-and-coming youngsters Carina Witthöft, Anna-Lena Friedsam, Antonia Lottner and Dinah Pfizenmaier from the Porsche Talent Team Germany.
The ladies will once again play host to two gentlemen on the opening day of the tournament proper – and tennis history will come alive in the Porsche Arena. The American Andre Agassi and the Austrian Thomas Muster will serve up an eagerly-awaited duel in the Berenberg Classics held in conjunction with the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix on 20 April at 6.30 pm (all times are local). The match will be televised live by Eurosport.
Andre Agassi, an eight-time Grand Slam winner and the husband of Steffi Graf, won 60 career titles and the Davis Cup twice with USA. At the 1996 Olympic Games he won the gold medal and headed the world rankings for a total of 101 weeks. The Austrian Thomas Muster, an out-and-out clay court specialist, won the French Open in 1995 and was also the world No. 1.
World class performances are also a part of the attractive supporting programme of events: one of the highlights are the appearances by the famous Stuttgarter Ballet on the Centre Court in the Porsche Arena – on Monday, 20 April, at 6.00 pm and on finals Sunday 26 April at 2.00 pm.
Tickets for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix can be booked by phoning Easy Ticket Service on +49 (0) 711 / 2 55 55 55 or via internet at www.easyticket.de.
911 Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet: Combined fuel consumption: 10,0 – 9,2 l/100 km; CO2 emissions: 235 - 214 g/km