Tuesday, August 3, 2010

2011 Hopman Cup to Bost stongest field yet.

Perth's Hopman Cup will boast its best ever field in 2011, with tennis juggernauts Serena Williams, Novak Djokovic, Ana Ivanovic, Justine Henin, Lleyton Hewitt and Gael Monfils already confirmed starters.

And the January 1-8 event's short-term future has been secured with the announcement of a four-year television deal with the Ten Network.

Djokovic won the 2009 Australian Open after competing at the Hopman Cup and believed a return to the Perth event could result in another major title.
"I'm looking forward to going back to the Hopman Cup," Djokovic said.

"For me it was a good preparation for the Australian Open."

Partnering world No.1 Williams is marathon man John Isner, who is best remembered for his 11-hour Wimbledon epic against Nicolas Mahut.

World No.5 Sam Stosur, who partnered Hewitt last year, is yet to decide whether to return, with a decision expected to come before the US Open.

World No.17 Monfils will be partnered by 2009 junior world No.1 Kristina Mladenovic, while world No.14 Henin will be joined by Steven Darcis.

Tournament director Paul McNamee hasn't given up hope on attracting world No.4 Andy Murray, who made the final with Laura Robson earlier this year.

"It's a spectacular line-up," tournament director Paul McNamee said.

"There is potential for some really great match-ups for both the men and the women, not to mention the mixed."

The future of the Hopman Cup was cast into doubt earlier this year after ABC dropped its coverage of the event.

But Network Ten stepped in to fill the breach, with 48 hours to be showcased on One HD and 20 hours, including the final, to be broadcast on the Ten network.

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