Surprisingly there are no similar press release published in the mainstream media (international or national yet). Also Arthur did not provide source of the article.
Anyway this is what he had posted:
For the first time ever a tournament featuring former world number ones in Tennis is being staged and Penang (press release error, should be Georgetown, Penang is the state) designated as a World Heritage City by UNESCO seems to be the perfect place to hold its first edition. Dubbed as “Kings of Tennis” Big Bang Penang, it is being held from 14th–16th November, 2008 at the scenic Esplanade in Georgetown, Penang.According to Arthur here's the order of play:
Be ready to witness a keen battle between Tennis greats like John McEnroe, Marcelo Rios and Pete Sampras from America and captained by Australia’s Roy Emerson and Europe’s Bjorn Borg, Stefan Edberg and Mats Wilander, captained by the all time Romanian great, Ilie Nastase. Both teams will have one extra player – battle hardened Jim Courier from America and enigmatic once-upon-a-time big-serving Russian Tennis prodigy, Marat Safin.
Will style and grace of John McEnroe’s volleys triumph over the booming service of Marat Safin or the impeccable serve and volley tennis of Stefan Edberg triumph over strong-serving Pete Sampras, still the holder of maximum numbers of Grand Slam singles titles among men. Definitely a sumptuous fare for all those tennis fans who were either not born or were too young when these greats ruled the courts.
The event is interestingly planned to bring out the drama among these Tennis Hall of Fame players who have enthralled the audiences across the world in the last 4 decades. On the first two days of the event, there will be two singles matches and one doubles match respectively while on the final day there will be four singles matches. This three-day event will be staged on a temporary tennis court with a 13,000 seating capacity (although Sunday Star reported only 5,000 seats). The court and the seating arrangements are almost ready and the overhead spot lights are being tested.
THE 'King of Tennis' showdown in Penang has been sanctioned by the Lawn Tennis Association of Malaysia (LTAM). The tournament received the endorsement two weeks ago. There has been rumors of the tournament been cancelled but our reliable sources have confirmed that this unique battle of titans is on and will be held as scheduled.
Friday, 14th November, 2008
3.00 pm Gate Opens
5.00 pm M. Wilander vs J. Courier
6.30 pm M. Safin vs M.Rios
8.00 pm S. Edberg/B Bjorg vs P. Sampras/J. McEnroe
Saturday, 15th November, 2008
2.00 pm Gate Opens
4.00 pm M. Safin/M. Wilander vs M. Rios/J. Courier
5.30 pm B. Borg vs J McEnroe
8.00 pm S. Edberg vs P. Sampras
Sunday, 17th November, 2008
1.00 pm Gate Opens
3.00 pm M. Wilander vs J. McEnroe
4.30 pm B. Bjorg vs J. Courier
6.00 pm S. Edberg vs M. Rios
7.30 pm M. Safin vs P. Sampras
Also someone left a comment saying that the stage is beautiful.
I don't know what kind of stage she meant but I can only find a small pathetic picture of the incomplete court covered with a canvas. Anyone from Penang want to send a photo of the newly built stadium to me?
So despite all the confusion and misunderstood created by the media guy at Kings of Tennis based in Sweden, Emerson saying that it's cancelled and the organizer unhappy with the Penang government for being unsupportive, it seems that this event is ready to roll, although there are still doubts about this event.
Hopefully everyone will enjoy the great opportunity to meet the former champs in action in Penang starting this Friday. I hope I can drop by this weekend to witness the event myself (if the event on Friday is on).
The webmaster of Marat Safin's official website said Safin coming to Malaysia is NOT true. Now I'm really pissed off for those who's responsible to give us false hope!
Click here to read about the event which is now officially cancelled.