Roger Federer's absence: Rogers Cup draws lower attendance than 2017
by LUIGI GATTO | VIEW 11461
In 2017, 216,000 people attended the Rogers Cup in Montreal. This year, in Toronto, the number was much lower and Roger Federer's absence played a part in it, as well as the rain. Speaking during a conference call on Sunday to reporters, the tournament director Karl Hale still showed his satisfaction for how the event went.
'We're over 150,000 attendance for the week,' Hale said. 'Something we're really proud of, especially with the rain. We would have beat that tremendously. So Rob Swan who leads that department does a tremendous job, and we're really happy with it,' said Hale. 'We feel it's extremely successful.
I think there's several different things. One is we had 19 of the top 20 players here. So that's the most important thing, a great player field. But also I think we penetrated the social fabric of Toronto where now we're a major sporting event.
So we had the players involved in various different ways, you know, from going to concerts and celebrities coming here like Sidney Crosby, Taylor Swift, Shaquille O'Neal. So it's the real talk of the town now in Toronto.' Commenting on the tournament development, Hale added: 'The grandstand upgrading to 1,000 more seats to 4,000 and the covered area was a huge hit for the fans.
Especially when we had to move Denis over there, we needed those seats. So it worked out great throughout the week. The medical zone was a massive hit with the players. I took Connor McDavid and Jason Spezza through. And compared to the hockey medical zones, they said it's totally comparable.
Like, it's really a high standard. Rafa talked about it. They all really, really said it's a great improvement for them. So it's important for us to keep at a very high standard.' ALSO READ: Pat Cash blames Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray