Tommy Haas and Petra Kvitova are set to headline from July 13-19 as German tennis tries to get back on its feet amid the COVID-19 lockdown.
The retired Haas – now TD of the Indian Wells Masters – and two-time Wimbledon winner Kvitova will be the main attractions for the exhibition organised as the new pre-Wimbledon Berlin WTA grass event set for debut this month had to be cancelled due to the worldwide health crisis.
Matches will be split into two distinct tournaments, the first to be played July 13-15 on grass at the Steffi Graf Stadium and the second on hardcourt in a hangar at the city’s Tempelhof airport July 17-19.
Haas, winner of 15 titles, has moved on smoothly from his ATP career, where he played his last official match in Stuttgart this week three years ago, when he beat good friend Roger Federer on the lawns of the Weissenhof club.
Other entrants on the ATP side of the event include third-ranked Austrian Dominic Thiem, German No. 1 Alexander Zverev, 40th-ranked Australian bad boy Nick Kyrgios and Italian young gun Jannik Sinner.
“I’m very excited to come back to Berlin, where I have not been in a very long time, to compete against some of the best players in the world,” Haas said.
“I love these kind of challenges and will prepare intensely and professionally.”
Kvitova will be challenged by Top 10 WTA rivals Elina Svitolina (fifth) and seventh-ranked Dutrchwoman Kiki Bertens. Also due to compete: Germans Andrea Petkovic and Julia Goerges among others.
Kvitova, with 27 career trophies, is keen to get back to action: “I’m very much looking forward to finally playing some tournaments in Berlin, one on grass and one on hardcourt.
“This will be an exciting week for all of us after this long time away from competitive tennis,” the Czech said.
The tournament will comprise men’s and women’s singles for a total of 24 combined matches, offering 200,000 EUR in prize money and played without fans present due to the virus crisis