Cameron Norrie to take part in team-based tennis tournament in New Zealand
Last Updated: 25/05/20 11:03am
Britain's Cameron Norrie has signed up to take part in a team-based tennis tournament in New Zealand as virus restrictions ease in the country.
The country will revive elite tennis when it stages the 'Premier League' in Auckland, marking the southern hemisphere's first pro competition since the COVID-19 pandemic brought global sport to a halt.
The men's team-based tournament will run for three weeks from June 3, giving tennis-starved fans something to watch in the absence of the pinnacle ATP and WTA tours, which have been suspended since early March.
New Zealand-based Briton Norrie will headline a modest field of 24 along with Ben McLachlan, a doubles specialist who switched allegiance to Japan and played Davis Cup for them.
World No 77 Norrie will play for a prize pool of about NZ$90,000 ($54,800), about half of which will be shared as base pay among all the entrants, giving some struggling players some welcome income during the sport's shutdown.
"Yeah, it's a big thing," Tennis New Zealand's commercial manager Gareth Archer said. "As soon as rugby starts there's probably no more talk about (anything else) in New Zealand so to get a week or two on them is a good thing."