Serena Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou starts independent tennis league

Patrick Mouratoglou, the coach of Serena Williams, announced he will start an independent tennis league which would feature professionals in the sport facing off in matches. The competitions will be held without fans and hosted at his academy in Nice, France.

The announcement of this league, which will be called the Ultimate Tennis Showdown or UTS, was made Saturday. The league’s creation was made in response to the sport’s 2020 season being brought to a halt as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mouratoglou says his plan for broadcasting will be to live stream 10 matches per weekend throughout the span of five weekends between May and June. The UTS will officially kick off on May 16. The first match is slated to be between 10th-ranked David Goffin of Belgium, a three-time Grand Slam quarterfinalist, and 103rd-ranked Alexei Popyrin of Australia, whose father is the co-founder of the league. 

As far as the Grand Slam calendar is concerned, the next scheduled tournament is supposed to take place in late August with the US Open — the grounds are being used as a coronavirus treatment center in the meantime. The French Open has already been postponed from May until September, and Wimbledon has been cancelled for the first time since 1944.

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