Ivo Kaderka, the President of the Czech Tennis Federation, has criticised the decision of Kosmos and the International Tennis Federaton to cancel the 2020 edition of the Davis Cup so early in the season even though the tournament was scheduled to be held in November.
The 2020 edition of the Davis Cup Finals was originally scheduled to be held in the third week of November in Madrid but the organisers cancelled the event in late June. At the time of cancellation, the ATP Tour was still hopeful of organising the Madrid Masters event, which has since been cancelled due to the health situation in Spain.
Kosmos (headed by footballer Gerard Pique) took over the event last year and reportedly invested $3 billion in the new format. The main change was that the World Group took place at one location and in one week, with 18 teams divided in six round-robin groups of three teams each, and the winners of the groups and the two best second places advancing to quarterfinals.
This was a big contrast to the earlier format where nations played on a home and away basis through the calendar year.
Czech Tennis Federation President Kaderka criticises cancellation of Davis Cup
According to the Bola Amarela site, Kaderka says the organizers have used the current pandemic as an excuse to cancel the event.
"Coronavirus really came in handy for those who promised millions for the Davis Cup. Now they say that without fans it is impossible to sustain the format. I would say that last year they had no audience at all and if it weren't for Nadal and Spain it would have been a total disaster.
” Spain, led by Rafael Nadal, won the 2019 Davis Cup, which was the first edition of the competition as per its new format. While the matches of Spain attracted major crowds, many of the other matches were played in front of few fans or empty stands.
There were also several scheduling challenges with many matches ending as late as 3 am local time. Spain won their sixth Davis Cup title last year and their first since 2011 by beating Canada 2-0 in the final. Rafael Nadal received the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for his performance in the tournament, winning all eight matches that he played. There have also been some calls to merge the Davis Cup Finals with the ATP Cup which was held in January this year.