The 63rd edition of the Conde de Godó Trophy will finally have five players in the top ten of the ATP ranking, a list headed by the Spanish Rafael Nadal, eight-time champion of the tournament and who will try to reconquer the title that Japanese Key snatched from him last year. Nishikori.
Nishikori, number 5 in the world, will defend his status as champion in a draw that will also include the Canadian of Montenegrin origin Milos Raonic (6), the Spanish David Ferrer (8), a four-time finalist in Barcelona, and the reigning champion of the US Open, Croatian Marin Cilic (10).
The tournament, which will be held from April 20 to 26 at the RCT Barcelona facilities, was presented today at the Saló de Cent of the Catalan capital’s city hall, in an act presided over by the city’s mayor, Xavier Trias.
«The Godó gives Barcelona its tradition and projects it as a sports capital. In addition, it is not only a sporting event but a social one of the first order, because those who do not go to Godó hardly exist in this city”, Trias has affirmed.
The sports director of Godó, Albert Costa, has been proud, “of the level that the tournament will have, one more year”, because in addition to these five ‘top-ten’, it will have another five players among the twenty best in the world : the Spanish Feliciano López (12), who will attend the event with the best ranking of his career, the Frenchman Jo Wilfried Tsonga (13), the Latvian Ernests Gulbis (15) and the also Spanish Roberto Bautista (16) and Tommy Robredo (22).
The Italian Fabio Fognini, the Argentineans Pablo Cuevas and Leonardo Mayer, the Frenchman Richard Gasquet, the German Philipp Kohlschreiber and the Spanish Fernando Verdasco complete, except for last-minute casualties, the sixteen heads of series.
Costa has also announced that, for the first time, the Godó will have a parallel U-14 tournament: «It is a novelty of which I am very proud. We will have a group of eight boys and eight girls, who will share the facilities with their idols.
The Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell, which this year will have a budget of approximately 10 million euros, is the third Open 500 that has distributed the most money in prizes: 1.99 million. They are only surpassed by Beijing and Dubai.
This year, in addition to the competition, the RC Tenis Barcelona facilities will host the annual meeting of ATP circuit tournament directors, as confirmed by the club’s president, Albert Agustí.
This year will also have greater television coverage, because as Agustí has anticipated, “Canal + joins TVE and TV3 in the broadcast of some matches.”
As usual, the Godó will pay tribute to a character who has played a prominent role in the history of the tournament. In its 63rd edition, the chosen one is former tennis player Joan Gisbert, who will be presented with a commemorative plaque for the 50th anniversary of his victory in the tournament, against the Australian Martin Mulligan. EFE