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EMPERORS PALACE TO HOST SA VS DENMARK DAVIS CUP TIE



Johannesburg - Davis Cup ties are as much about ambiance as they are about competition and both the players and the fans will be treated to top-class tennis in a superb environment when South Africa take on Denmark in a Euro/Africa Zone Group 2 Davis Cup tie from 18 to 20 July 2008.

May 28th, 2008

EMPERORS PALACE TO HOST SA VS DENMARK DAVIS CUP TIE

Johannesburg - Davis Cup ties are as much about ambiance as they are about competition and both the players and the fans will be treated to top-class tennis in a superb environment when South Africa take on Denmark in a Euro/Africa Zone Group 2 Davis Cup tie from 18 to 20 July 2008.

The tie will be staged at Emperors Palace on the new Davis Cup championship tennis court in the gardens of Emperors Palace. "This is a fantastic event at a fantastic venue,'' exclaimed Ian Smith, chief executive of the South African Tennis Association (SATA).

"The Davis Cup is one of the most prestigious events on the tennis calendar and is vital for the growth of the sport in South Africa. To be able to hold this event in a superb arena of this nature only adds to its stature.''

South Africa and Denmark have met on four occasions with the honours being shared 2-2. While the Danes won the first two ties in 1955 and 1957 but South Africa have won the last two meetings, in 1963 and 2003 respectively. However, all the previous ties have been staged in Denmark and this will be the first time they will meet on South African shores.

Whatever happens on the court, the Danes are sure to relish the hospitality they will receive at Emperors Palace. Strategically situated adjacent to the OR Tambo International Airport, Emperors Palace Hotel Casino and Convention Resort, has become the gateway to Africa offering guests the perfect getaway experience or stop over solution.

The resort combines classical elegance with fantastic non-stop entertainment and world-class accommodation. The Roman-styled resort, reminiscent of the days of Caesar, is owned and managed by Peermont - one of the fastest growing hospitality companies in the Southern Hemisphere.

Emperors Palace is also the home to many sporting activities such as boxing, darts and bowls and with the addition of the Davis Cup, Emperors Palace will soon be known for hosting one of South Africa's finest tennis events.

Mark Jakins, Peermont's Group Chief Commercial Officer, comments: "We are delighted to be working with the South African Tennis Association in hosting the South Africa vs. Denmark Davis Cup Tie at Emperors Palace in July.

"The resort prides itself on outstanding sporting and entertainment events and for the 2008 Davis Cup tie our guests and tennis fans will be blown away by activities planned around the event. We will make sure the 2008 event is one to remember and becomes a must for fans on the South African tennis calendar.

"We invite the public to participate in this year's Davis Cup and encourage visitors to support our tennis champions. Emperors Palace is a world class resort and has become the gateway to South Africa and we look forward to sponsoring this incredible event. The public will experience an entertainment spectacular with outstanding hospitality; with dancers from the new Odeon Show bar production, Simply Irresistible to officially open the tournament and mixing up the sound is comical interactive DJ's Dizzy Dee and Tiny Tim."

The South African team is likely to be headed up by fast-improving Kevin Anderson who is on the brink of breaking into the world's top 100. Anderson, who turned 22 on May 18, has the distinction of beating World No 3 Novak Djokavic at the Masters tournament at Miami in March this year. He could be supported by Wesley Moodie, Rik de Voest and South Africa's top doubles protagonist Jeff Coetzee. Coetzee and Moodie have been a formidable doubles combination this year, winning the title in Estoril and reaching the semifinals of the Australian Open, the Miami Masters and the Monte Carlo Masters. The South African team will be announced early in June.

Kristian Pless, ranked 124, is the highest ranked Danish player but he has been plagued by injury and had to retire from his last match after just one game in the semifinals of the tournament in New Dehli earlier this month. The other key Danish players could include Frederik Nielsen, Martin Pedersen, Rasmus Norby and Jacob Melskens.

The tie will be played on a hard court with seats for 1400 spectators.

Programme for the tie:

Friday: 9.45am Opening Ceremony. The first singles match will start at 10am with the second rubber following immediately thereafter.

Saturday: 1.30pm Doubles Match

Sunday: 10am: First reverse singles match, followed by final singles match.

All the matches are played as the best of five sets until a result has been achieved.

Current ATP Rankings for individual players:

South Africa - Jeff Coetzee (D 17), Wesley Moodie (S 192/D 23), Rik de Voest (S 128/D 57) and Kevin Anderson (S 100/D 372)

Denmark - Rasmus Norby (S 640/D 284), Frederik Nielsen (S 307/D 155) and Martin Pedersen (S 351/D271)

About Davis Cup: Davis Cup by BNP Paribas is the largest annual international team competition in sport with 127 nations entered in 2008. The title sponsor is BNP Paribas, the Official Bank of Davis Cup. International sponsors are Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Turismo Madrid (Official Tourist Destination), Hugo Boss (Official Men's Fashion Clothing Sponsor), Kia Motors (Official Car) and NH Hoteles (Official Hotel). International partners are NTT Communications (Official Managed Hosting Partner), Wilson Sporting Goods (Official Ball) and TTK (Official Licensing Partner). Follow all the action on www.daviscup.com.

About Emperors Palace: Emperors Palace is a sensational resort that combines timeless classical elegance and sheer excitement. Conveniently located next to the O.R. Tambo International Airport, and is easily accessible from most parts of Johannesburg and Pretoria. The resort offers a unique experience with luxurious accommodation, leisure facilities, a magnificent casino with unparalleled gaming enjoyment, the finest in dining and entertainment and a children's paradise with an indoor themed entertainment centre. Emperors Palace has been voted ‘Africa's Leading Casino Resort in South Africa' by the World Travel Awards for two years in a row.

Ends.

This media release was compiled and distributed by BLD Communications on behalf of the South African Tennis Association. For media enquiries please contact Marks Mokolobate on 083 300 8268 or email marks@thebldgroup.com


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