SWISS INDOORS 2012

'THE MAN BEHIND' - ROGER

Swiss Indoors Opening Ceremony. Photo from swissindoorsbasel.ch

UPDATED: SEPTEMBER 22, Beeyong Sison

 

"It was an exciting journey through time, spanning four generations of tennis,."

 

World No.1 and 17-time Grand Slam Champion Roger Federer, along with recently crowned US Open Champion and Olympic Gold Medalist Andy Murray, will be the top entries competing in this year’s Swiss Indoors Championships in Basel, Switzerland on October 20 to 28. 

 

Swiss Indoors is an important ATP 500 World Tour stop as part of the season-ending race to the Barclays ATP World Finals on November 5 in London. 

 

Also confirmed to play is the 2009 US Open Champion and Olympic Bronze -Medalist Juan Martin Del Potro of Argentina bringing all Olympic Medalists to the fore-front of this year's edition No. 42 of Swiss Indoors.

"The persistent and hardworking gentleman who made it all possible establishing the tournament from its humble beginnings in 1970, as a non-ATP event won by little known Klaus Berger of Germany, to now what has become a tennis mecca and home to the greatest names in tennis history outside of the Grand Slam events. Kudos Roger!"

Home-grown Federer will try for a record 6th title at Swiss Indoors. Photo from swissindoorsbasel.ch

Both Federer and Murray are coming off successful summer stints with Federer winning Wimbledon for the seventh time regaining the number one ranking, silver medal at the London Olympics, and a victory at the Cincinnati Masters entrenching the 31-year old's position at the top. 

 

Murray, meanwhile, was finalist to Federer at the Championships but turned the tables at the Olympic finals copping the Gold. Culminating with his first Grand Slam career title at the US Open, Murray finally ended a 76-year drought becoming the first British player to win a Grand Slam title since Fred Perry did it last in 1936, also at the US Open.

 

Considered as the largest sporting event in Switzerland and Europe’s largest indoor tennis tournament held at the now famous St Jakobshalle Stadium, Federer will try to defend his title for the second straight year and win a record sixth Swiss Indoors title to add to his ever-growing career list of achievements.

"The Basel homecoming will coincide with Federer becoming the first male tennis player in the Open-Era to complete 300 weeks as World No.1, if he reaches at least the round of 16s at Shanghai Masters the week before on October 15."

'The Man Behind'' - Roger! Photo from swissindoorsbasel.ch

Growing-up just a few minutes ride by tram from the stadium in Munchenstein, Federer served as a ball-boy at the tournament which included tennis greats John McEnroe, Boris Becker, Jim Courier, Goran Ivanisevic, Andre Agassi, Stefan Edberg and Pete Sampras.

 

In an outburst of emotion after winning his first Swiss Indoor title in 2006, the Baselland resident said, "It's one of the most beautiful moments of my career. Although I always wanted to be a professional tennis player, I never dreamed that I would one day be a champion here. It's unbelievable." 

 

The Basel homecoming will coincide with Federer becoming the first male tennis player in the Open-Era to complete 300 weeks as World No.1, if he reaches at least the round of 16s at Shanghai Masters the week before on October 15.

 

Achieving this milestone would be a great ceremonial serve for Federer to toss to his family and friends at the start of the Swiss Indoors marking his 301st week as World No.1.

Roger Brennwald. Photo from swissindoorsbasel.ch

This special honor would make the other Roger proud. The persistent and hardworking gentleman who made it all possible. Roger Brennwald, the Swiss Indoors AG president, established the tournament from its humble beginnings in 1970, as a non-ATP event won by little known Klaus Berger of Germany, to now what has become a tennis mecca and home to the greatest names in tennis history outside of the Grand Slam events.

 

Recipient of the "ATP Award of the Year" for excellent organization and services in 2005, Brennwald subsequently was awarded the prestigious "Xaver of the Year" given to a public figure for outstanding achievements that have sustainable repercussions throughout Switzerland in 2009.  

 

"It was an exciting journey through time, spanning four generations of tennis," said the former Bank of International Settlements officer who gave up his lucrative career in the late 80's to focus solely on managing the Swiss Indoors event .

 

"Kudos Herrn Brennwald...Ich wünsche dir viel Glück und sowie die andere kleine Roger!"

Beeyong Sison

 

NOTE: This writer coached and taught at the Swiss Indoors-owned Sportcenter Paradies in Allschwil, Switzerland from 1985 until 1995. 

 

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