Michael Roberts, Tennis West chief executive and Hopman Cup general manager has expressed his concerns over the sub-par facilities that were offered to the Swiss tennis player Roger Federer this week at the State Tennis Centre.
Federer, who has arrived at Perth after 15 years to play in the 29th edition of the Hopman Cup has been the centre of attraction and has caused a huge stir among local tennis enthusiasts.
As per Roberts, if WA wants famous players to participate in their events, the Tennis Centre needs an urgent makeover. He added that it was a sad story for a player like Roger Federer, who had a poor experience inside the building where the gym was falling apart. He mentioned that although the courts were fine, but the condition of the gym was way below par.
Roberts has also expressed his concerns that it is lucky on their part that have not been charged by the ITF for not providing the bare minimum facilities which are expected at an international level.
It is to be noted that few walls of the gym were being knocked down on grounds of expansion, which is not looked upon as the best advertisement for the event.
Roberts continued that if they hoped the great players to come back and play at Perth, every aspect of the tournament, including the facilities at the State Tennis Centre needs to be world-class.
Tennis West in association with Department of Sport and Recreation has created a business case along with a master plan for the redevelopment of the Burswood site that is adjacent to the New Perth Stadium. The whole project cost is estimated to be around $46 million, $16 million of which would be invested in preparing 22 outdoor courts that would contain 4 clay courts as well.
The second phase of the project would see the restoration of the administration block, which as per Roberts is falling apart. As a third phase of the project, the committee has plans to provision four indoor courts. The last phase of the project is to create an accommodation hub for overseas and interstate players who would come to the Tennis Centre to train themselves.