Roger Federer's Rome triumph would've been icing on cake: Former organizer

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Roger Federer's Rome triumph would've been icing on cake: Former organizer

The Italian Sports Olympic Committee chief Giovanni Malago commented on the Rome Open's history. "I was the Rome Open chief in 1998-1999, I was at the beginning of my career, at the time Guga Kuerten and Marcelo Rios won on the men's side, Martina Hingis and Venus Williams on the women's side.

While if you look at the men's winner list from 2005 to now, except Alexander Zverev's success dated back to two years ago, Nadal and Djokovic basically always won. The Big Four marked this era, Andy Murray won one year too, even if the Rome trophy misses on Federer's list to put the icing on the cake.

I thank the municipality and government, we are showing that we are all together and when we all head into the same direction we are almost unbeatable. I am particularly proud about it because we are standing out." Malago feels satisfied with the progress made: "Many of us may remember that having gotten to the peak of our success improving seemed to be impossible and instead it constantly happened, growing year by year because of everyone's credit.

The Italian Tennis Federation believed so much in this journey. There was a lot of professionalism and the credibility of the Italian sport depends on the prestige and success of this event too. On May 15 the final of the soccer event, Coppa Italia (the Italian Cup) will take place, so there will be around 100,000 people in the area. That will be a challenge, but we will be able to handle it."