The 45th Annual General Meeting of Tennis Europe ended on a note of strength and unity, as the regional association sent a message of frustration to the sport’s governing bodies, while readmitting Moldova to the European tennis family following a period of instability for the country’s federation.
Contemporary issues affecting the administration of the sport were high on the agenda. Delegates took advantage of several interactive sessions and panel discussions to discuss hot topics such as Davis Cup reform, the forthcoming International Tennis Federation elections, the ITF World Tennis Tour and live scoring/betting with key decision makers.
The Open Session of the Meeting featured presentations from ITF President David Haggerty, COO Kelly Fairweather and the Executive Director of ITF Circuits, Jackie Nesbitt, plus an update on Padel activities from Tennis Europe's Vice-President Luisanna Fodde and Padel Manager Marta Conean, along with Mr. Fairweather.
The Plenary Session was led by Tennis Europe President Vladimir Dmitriev, who provided his annual report before ceding the floor to the organisation’s CEO Thomas Hammerl. The CEO began by highlighting the importance of recognition from players and agents for the work done by national federations, and went on to give an overview of Tennis Europe’s current projects.
The Committee Chairs Christiane Jolissaint (Development), Eva-Maria Schneider (Junior Tennis), Attila Richter (Senior Tennis) and Allar Hint (Professional Tennis) then gave updates on each field of activity. Honorary Treasurer David Rawlinson reported on Tennis Europe’s positive financial performance over the past year and the projected accounts and budget were unanimously approved.
Following the Meeting, Tennis Europe issued a statement with a unanimous appeal from the national federations present for the restoration of ATP ranking points at lower-level ITF World Tennis Tour events.
Hosted in Valletta by the Malta Tennis Federation from March 29-30, the Meeting saw attendance from 106 delegates representing 41 national federations, just shy of 2018’s record.
Mr. Dmitriev and Mr. Haggerty were joined by Malta Tennis Federation President David Farrugia Sacco for an audience with Maltese Prime Minister and supporter of the sport, Joseph Muscat, prior to the opening of the meeting. Friday evening’s official dinner also saw ceremonies to present the Tennis Europe Awards, and European Tennis Trophy, which was won for a second successive year by France.
Mr. Dmitriev commented, “This has been a successful meeting and I am very pleased with the confidence expressed by the delegates in the work carried out by Tennis Europe over the past year. Such high levels of attendance and engagement are encouraging, and we are very happy to provide this platform for our member nations to express their opinions. I’d especially like to thank Mr. Haggerty and his team from the ITF for their presence and contributions. Finally, on behalf of everyone that attended, I’d like to thank our hosts for their extraordinary hospitality and flawless organisation.”
The Meeting ended with confirmation that the 2020 event will be held in Crete and hosted by the Hellenic Tennis Federation.
Click here for a full photo gallery from Malta, or see a selection of images in the slideshow below.