Djokovic And Alcaraz To Meet In Lucrative Exhibition Match In Saudi Arabia

Djokovic And Alcaraz To Meet In Lucrative Exhibition Match In Saudi Arabia

by Nurein Ahmed

Last updated

Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz will square off in an exhibition match as part of Saudi Arabai's annual sporting bonanza in its capital city, Riyadh, in late December.

One of the most popular seasons in Saudi Arabia is the Riyadh Season which begins in late October. It is a government-sponsored, city-wide annual festival garnished with entertainment and sports activities in the Gulf Kingdom's capital and lasts until January at the latest.

The tennis event, dubbed as the Riadh Season Tennis Cup, will be held between December 26 and 27, featuring the world's top two ATP players - Djokovic and Alcaraz, in addition to WTA's current World No. 1 Aryna Sabalenka and Tunisia's Ons Jabeur.

Sabalenka and Arab sensation Jabeur will play the women's match on December 26, with Djokovic and Alcaraz battling in front of what is sure to be an electric crowd a day later.

This will come just weeks from Saudi Arabia commemorating its first professional tennis tournament in the city of Jeddah, hosting the Next Gen ATP Finals.

Its latest strategic move in venturing into the sports arena is another indication that tennis appears to be its No. 1 priority, at least for the upcoming year. It is no secret that Saudi Arabia has been in constant communication with the ATP for quite some time.

The Next Gen ATP Finals isn't the only tennis tournament they intend to host, and ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi has previously spoken of the possibility of bringing more tennis tournaments in the Middle East, specifically Saudi Arabia.

However, the complexities of the tennis calendar have hindered any decision-making process. The oil-rich country has held exhibition tennis tournaments during the tennis off-season, notably the Diryah Tennis Cup, in 2019 and 2022, respectively.

It received massive backlash from tennis buffs and onlookers due to its extravagant prize money. Last year, Taylor Fritz earned $1 million by winning the tournament.

Understandably, Djokovic and Alcaraz will command at least a seven-figure appearance fee at the event. The world's top two players have formed an intriguing rivalry in the past 18 months, currently tied at 2-2 in their head-to-head.


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