In an exclusive interview with Tennis World USA, Adelaide's Tournament Director Alistair MacDonald spoke about the reasons why Novak Djokovic has agreed to play the Australian tournament that starts on January 13 just prior to the Australian Open.
He said: "It's a pure scheduling decision with the new calendar coming up. Most of the players have committed to the ATP Cup, which, depending on results, can finish on Tuesday or Sunday per each player and Novak is looking for more matches before the Australian Open.
He has won here in 2007. We had a couple of conversations woth him. We talked to all the playees a long time ago. Novak thought it would be a good preparation qnd he said he was interested in playing here. We have a good system because we have a direct flight to Melbourne.
We are really happy, we have got some great players both on the male and female side. We have a roof on the central Court if it starts raining." Asked when the real process of making an ATP event getting back on the calendar, he replied: "It was maybe November or December last year when we started involving the government, building a roof on the Central Court.
We will probably stay around for ten years at least because of the ATP calendar. It's a tourist city as well. Tickets sales are going very well at the moment. It's about providing world class experience to the players and the fans."
Novak Djokovic is also playing the ATP Cup and thus will be playing two events before his attempt at title defence at the Australian Open.