Colm McLoughlin, the Executive Vice-Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty-Free, praised Roger Federer's commitment to the Dubai Open. The Swiss player headlined the 2019 men's field along with Kei Nishikori and Marin Cilic.
"Every year, we talk to Roger about playing Dubai and we are obviously very happy when he does include us in his schedule", said McLoughlin in an interview to Gulf News. "Roger has been coming to Dubai since 2002 when he was a young player and making his way up the rankings.
From the very start, the media were talking about Roger being a very special player who had a very calm demeanour and was down to earth. These qualities have endeared him to his legion of fans around the world. He is a familiar figure in Dubai at different times of the year and the Dubai fans have really taken them to their hearts and cheer him on through the tournament, and we are always happy to welcome back our seven-time champion."
McLoughlin also praised the effort, the organizers have been putting in organizing the tournament year in and year out: “For the most part, we have the same group of people from Dubai Duty Free and our partners involved in organising the tournament for many years and I think that this familiarity and the friendly atmosphere that is evident on site is felt by the players, officials and media, who now know us well.
Every year we try to improve the tournament in some way, for example, this year, we upgraded the on-court lighting systems and we introduced a purpose-built player lounge on one side of the hotel — which is spacious and provides excellent food choices for the players throughout the day.
So generally speaking, we look after the interests of the players, officials, the sponsors, the media and of course the fans and it is appreciated." Federer reached the semi-final in Dubai, after beating Marton Fucsovics in Thursday's quarter-final.