With the exciting news that world number 1 Novak Djokovic will be making his seventh appearance at The Boodles Challenge 2012 tournament next week, we thought it would be great to take a closer look at this prestigious and exclusive Wimbledon warm-up event.
Formally known as the Boodle and Dunthorne Champions Challenge, The Boodles Challenge was firmly established in its inaugural year of 2002 as the place to be in the UK for elite tennis entertainment. Year after year this event has attracted some of the top names in the sport including Tim Henman, Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras and Goran Ivanisevic. With opportunities to play in both challenge matches and exhibition matches, something that has been taken full advantage of by world number 1 players Maria Sharapova, Novak Djokovic and British top seed Andy Murray, this tournament offers players the chance to reflect on the losses and accomplishments made on the clay courts of the Roland Garros and marks the start of the thrilling grass-court season.
The quintessential British tennis experience held in the magnificent grounds of Stoke Park, Buckinghamshire, The Boodles is well known to be both a highlight on the year’s tennis calendar and its social calendar. Providing the same luxurious experience to players and guests, this event has become renowned as the most prestigious Wimbledon warm-up tournament for the world’s best male tennis players. Placing hospitality and true entertainment at the forefront, the Boodles experience is unlike any other in the world. With the tournament limited to no more than 1500 spectators, guests sit just 8 metres away from court for unrivalled and often thrilling views of the best tennis action. Even the players themselves have been known to revel in the luxurious atmosphere at Stoke Park, last year Novak Djokovic and his girlfriend Jelena Ristic indulged in a stunning photo shoot in the venue’s beautiful grounds.
The format of the Challenge itself is simple, but one that never fails to entertain the lucky spectators who are able to attend the full event. Taking place over a total of five days, each official challenge tournament player will complete in a number of matches throughout these days eliminating each other into an 8-man playing field. As well as the traditional quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals matches involved in the main challenge, losers of matches throughout the week are able to continue competing on the lawns at Stoke Park by participating in unique exhibition matches, the likes of which simply aren’t seen elsewhere.
Joining Novak Djokovic this year, who is hoping to repeat 2011’s winning formula of an exhibition match at Boodles and a successful finals at Wimbledon, are some of the best players currently topping the rankings. Confirmed names so far included Juan Martin Del Potro, John Isner, Janko Tipsarevic, Marin Cilic, Stanislas Wawrinka, Alexandr Dolgopolov, Gael Monfils and Gilles Simon. Reigning Champion David Ferrer is also expected to return for a title defence, along with many other of the brightest names in the sport.
SteveG is pleased to announce that we will be your eyes and ears at this event, and we will be keeping you updated with all the match results as well as the spectacle of watching the world’s best tennis players compete in this stunning environment.