Former Australian tennis star Darren Cahill absolutely believes that the ATP should consider making a surface change at the Nitto ATP Finals event. A clay surface has never been used at the ATP Finals. Hard, carpet and grass surfaces have all been used at the season-ending tournament.
An indoor-hard surface has been used at the ATP Finals since 2006. The ATP Finals event will be held at The O2 Arena for at least two more years but it may move from London in 2021. On Friday, the ATP revealed a shortlist of candidates to host the ATP Finals from 2021 to 2025 -- London, Manchester, Turin, Singapore and Tokyo.
Many have argued that repeatedly hosting the ATP Finals on one surface is unfair to some players. Rafael Nadal -- a record 11-time French Open champion and considered by many the greatest clay-courter ever -- has never won an ATP Finals title.
Hosting the ATP Finals event on clay in November would likely require the ATP to make some calendar changes as the last ATP clay-court tournament of the season is held in July. "It needs to be played on clay. They could easily drop a clay court and a couple of practice courts in the O2.
More expensive but dollars are flowing with the bidding. It's unfair that it’s always on one surface," Cahill said on Twitter. "I'm ok with it staying at the O2 if that's what is decided as London has supported it incredibly well.
But rotating the surface a little bit is important. It's the ATP’s biggest event and should be fair to all players across a career." Also read: 2017 runner-up David Goffin joins star-studded 2019 Rotterdam player field