ATP Tour

Players hail new ATP chief

Chris Kermode (Getty Images)
Chris Kermode (Getty Images)

London - Britain's Chris Kermode took over as the head of international men's tennis on Wednesday after being appointed executive chairman and president of the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals).

Kermode, 48, is the man behind the ATP World Tour Finals, which have taken place in London for the past five years, and the tournament director of the Queen's Club Championships. He was the unanimous choice of the ATP board.

"It's a huge honour to have been given the opportunity to lead the ATP during what is unquestionably one of the most exciting periods in the history of men's professional tennis," Kermode said.

"I look forward to getting started in my new role and to working very hard together with ATP staff, players, tournaments and partners as we look to harness the full potential of our great sport in years to come."

Kermode's appointment was acclaimed by both reigning Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and 17-time Grand Slam-winner Roger Federer.

"I've known and worked with Chris for many years and he gets on well with the players," said Murray, who is also the current Queen's champion.

"He's done a great job with Queen's and the World Tour Finals and I look forward to working with him in his new role."

Federer, the current president of the ATP Player Council, said: "On behalf of the players, I am delighted to welcome Chris as our new ATP executive chairman and president.

"Chris has a lot of experience, having worked in a number of different capacities in tennis over the years, and he has all the attributes required to lead the ATP World Tour forward during this period of unprecedented popularity and success."

Kermode will begin a three-year term on January 1 and succeeds Australian Brad Drewett, who died from motor neurone disease in May after stepping down from his role the previous January.

It had been vacant since then.

Keromde had a brief playing career, reaching a high of 742 in the world ranking in 1986, before becoming a coach. He went on to work in the film and music industries and also started his own promotion and events company before returning to tennis.

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