Queen’s Club to Host Women’s Event in 2025, Grass Court Concerns Raised

Queen’s Club to Host Women’s Event in 2025, Grass Court Concerns Raised

London’s Queen’s Club will host a women’s event next year for the first time since 1973, as the LTA announced a major shake-up of their 2025 calendar.

The new tournament will be held the week before the men’s event, just after the French Open, from June 9-16.

It will act as a curtain-raiser for the grass court season and should be a significant boost to the visibility of the women’s game pre-Wimbledon.

The sticking point to a plan that has been in the works for some time has been concern from the men’s game over what state the grass courts will be in by the time their event begins.

The LTA appear to have assuaged those fears to an extent but the men’s ATP tour have fallen short of agreeing to the event as a fixture in the calendar.

Starting next year Queen’s Club will stage women’s events for the first time since 1973

It means the likes of Brit Katie Boulter can play at the same event as her partner Alex de Minaur

It means the likes of Brit Katie Boulter can play at the same event as her partner Alex de Minaur

‘We’ve been discussing this with the ATP for the best part of a year and they’ve given the green light for the tournament to take place in 2025,’ said Chris Pollard, the LTA’s head of major events.

‘The position the ATP have taken is they would like to consider what happens after 2025 but we remain very confident that it will be a permanent change.

‘We have absolute confidence that we can stage a two-week event at the Queen’s Club – the Championships at Wimbledon prove that grass can withstand two weeks of tennis.

‘We have independent data from the sports turf research institute that provides a lot of evidence that the men’s week will not suffer in any shape or form and the integrity of the courts will be maintained.’

The new tournament will be at the 500 level, the same as the men’s event, although unlike at Wimbledon the prize money – set by the tours, not the LTA – will be lower for the women than the men.

There is an increasing – and welcome – shift in the tennis world towards more joint men’s and women’s events and the LTA have reshuffled the calendar such that every venue next year will host events for both sexes.

The ATP fears the men's tournament will be affected due to the grass quality being lower than it is with the women's event due to take place the week before it

The ATP fears the men’s tournament will be affected due to the grass quality being lower than it is with the women’s event due to take place the week before it

To make room for the Queen’s event, Eastbourne will be downgraded to 250 level and Birmingham will drop to a Challenger event, a move back to coincide with the second week of the French Open and absorb the men’s tournament currently held in Surbiton.

These changes will significantly impact the quality of field those women’s events will be able to attract and appears to be at odds with the LTA’s pledge to support high-level tennis outside London.

Simon Greenwell, Chair of the Queen’s Club, said: ‘The Queen’s Club is delighted to be hosting a leading women’s tournament after a 52-year absence. The Championships was first held at the club in 1890 as a joint men’s and women’s event and, 135 years on, we are proud to be hosting both WTA and ATP tournaments on our historic grass courts.’

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