'Masha mania' to hit Manila as IPTL tickets go on sale
Alder Almo (The Philippine Star) - August 31, 2014 - 4:00pm

MANILA, Philippines – Finally, the most sought-after tickets to the much-anticipated International Premier Tennis League (IPTL) tour featuring Maria Sharapova and Andy Murray in Manila will go on sale starting Monday (Sept. 1).

IPPTL organizers earlier announced that it would go on sale on or before Aug. 15 but the two weeks delay has been caused by the shift of venue from Smart Araneta Coliseum to Mall of Asia Arena.

Eric Gottschalk, COO of IPTL who is currently in town to kick start the ticket campaign announced the change of venue on Saturday.

“When the Mall of Asia, one of the finest entertainment venues in the world, recently opened up the dates required to host the IPTL, we had to reconsider our previous venue options and quickly agreed that MOA is the right fit to host such an event,” Gottschalk said in an email to Philstar.com.

SM Tickets will hold an “Early Bird” sale for the Nov. 28-30 event for two weeks starting on Monday (Sept. 1) to Sept. 15.

The three-day pass during the “Early Bird” sale will range from as low as Php 2,500 for General Admission to as high as Php 49,000 for the VIP section (including red carpet entry).  

Each 3-day pass entitles the holder to watch 2 daily matches, which will start at 4:00 pm and 7:30 pm daily.

The Mall of Asia Arena is expected to be packed to the rafters in its first ever hosting of a professional tennis tour featuring the world’s best players.

Philippines which will be represented by the Manila Mavericks in the IPTL tour will be led by Sharapova and Murray. The top two stars will be joined by their teammates Jo-Wilfred Tsonga, Kirsten Flipkens, Daniel Nestor, Carlos Moya and top Philippines player Treat Huey. The 28-year-old Huey is the Philippines’ no. 1 and current ATP Doubles World No. 33.

The other tennis stars confirmed to participate in the Manila leg of the four-city tour are Serena Williams, Ana Ivanovic, Eugenie Bouchard, Danilela Hantuchova, Thoms Berdych, Lleyton Hewitt, Patrick Rafter, Nick Kyrgios, Gael Monfils, Fabrice Santoro, Richard Gasquet, Goran Ivanisevic and more.

“SM is the biggest conglomerate in the Philippines and having them as a partner adds a lot of value to our property and validates the potential of our league. I would like to thank SM for their long term commitment to the IPTL and the Manila Mavericks and we look forward to staging a World Premiere at MOA Arena in November,” IPTL founder Mahesh Bhupathi said.

The Manila Mavericks will take on the UAE Royals, Singapore Slammers and Indian Aces for the winning team’s purse of USD 1 million.

The IPTL is “Breaking the Code” of traditional rules of tennis with its new format in which each match consists of 5 sets played in different formats by different players (men’s singles, women’s singles, men’s doubles, mixed doubles and former Champions’ singles) and where each game won counts as one point for the team point’s total. The team that wins the most games overall, across the five sets, wins the match.

Fans will see players calling for “time-outs” in the middle of a game, announcing a “power point” and play a “shoot out” to decide the winners of each match, while live entertainment, a running shot clock and many more features promise edge of the seat action.

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