TSA joins forces with Wiphold to launch lucrative international women's tournaments
Top female tennis players from across South Africa and around the world will converge on the capital city early next year, with Tennis South Africa (TSA) again set to host two major International Tennis Federation (ITF) women's tournaments in Tshwane.
In partnership with title sponsor WIPHOLD and the ITF, who are providing significant financial support, the national federation has confirmed two weeks of back-to-back W50 tournaments.
These events, which are equivalent to ATP Challenger 50 for men’s tournaments, will be held at TuksTennis, University of Pretoria between 18 February and 2 March 2024.
Both tournaments will offer massive prize money of $40 000 (R740 000), providing significant opportunities for local women in tennis to test themselves against international players, while earning lucrative prize money and securing valuable ranking points.
Striving to ensure equal opportunities are provided on the court, with support from companies like WIPHOLD, the ITF has made proactive steps to drive the women's tennis game forward in recent years.
Historically, for every two ATP Challenger men's tournaments on the calendar there had been only one ITF women’s event. This year, however, the gap has been narrowed to almost one-to-one (185 women’s events compared to 195 ATP Challengers) which is a groundbreaking achievement for the sport.
"WIPHOLD is dedicated to the empowerment of women in South Africa, especially young women and girls who have been historically disenfranchised. It is our aim to ensure that, as we continue to support TSA through yearly sponsorship, these financial contributions have a meaningful and transformative impact on these young women and girls aiming to be champions in tennis. It is our wish that, in the foreseeable future, a champion will emerge from these humble beginnings. We remain committed to and value our partnership with Tennis South Africa," commented WIPHOLD co-founder and Executive Chairman, Louisa Mojela.
"The ITF is striving to achieve gender parity, as are we at TSA, so our goals are very much aligned with WIPHOLD, who are committed to growing women’s tennis in South Africa. We are pleased to have such a fitting partner for these two W50 tournaments," said TSA president Gavin Crookes.
"This year we hosted $25 000 and $60 000 tournaments, and we have opted for two $40 000 events next season, which will benefit our local players more in terms of the level of play, exposure, ranking points and cash incentives.
"We are again proud to be hosting two international women's tournaments, which we believe will assist in continuing to grow the tennis game for SA women.”