The ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament has been one of to the most prestigious sporting events in the Netherlands for years.
A brief review
Since 1974, ABN AMRO has been the sponsor the tournament, which in the beginning was part of the WCT-Series (World Championship of Tennis), the precursor of the ATP World Tour.
The first tournament
The first tournament in 1974 had a Dutch winner, Tom Okker, who beat Tom Gorman after an exciting final. After the initial Dutch success, it would last 21 years, until 1995, for a homeplayer to win the tournament. The current tournament director Richard Krajicek was the second player to ensure a Dutch victory. Given the quality of the participating players this can be seen as only logical. Other legendary tournament winners are Arthur Ashe (2x), Dick Stockton, Jimmy Connors (2x), Bjorn Borg, Guillermo Vilas, Stefan Edberg, Boris Becker and Roger Federer.
Over the years the tournament has grown enormously. By comparison, in 1974, 46,000 people attended the tournament, and in 2013, a record number of 116,354 people attended the tournament. There also is a grow in the tournament prize money. In the 70´s Arthur Ashe settled for an amount of $ 12,000, now the winner receives €401.580.
In the first year the tournament was only broadcasted by the AVRO. The familiar voice of Willem Duys was for years inextricably linked to the tournament. Later, foreign TV stations started to have an interest in broadcasting the tournament. Today, the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament is broadcast in 186 countries. This has resulted in the tournament being covered in every corner of the world, in newspapers, sports magazines, online and on TV.