Plenty Of Behind-The-Scenes Work Sets Stage For Australian Open
When the players walk out on court in Melbourne for the Australian Open, "the sweat businesses put in to create the stage for the showdown" will still be visible, according to Gillian Duncan of THE NATIONAL. To whom the responsibility for all of the behind-the-scenes work falls "depends on the tournament in question." IMG VP and Managing Dir Greg Sproule, whose company is involved in the organization of the Australian Open, said: "We do not run the Australian Open. That's done by Tennis Australia who do an incredible job, but we assist them in certain areas. We assist them in areas like commercial rights, so in finding sponsors for the event and similarly in television distribution." Incidentally, TV is an area where sport and business "really converge." Professional Sports Group CEO Jamie Cunningham said, "The Australian Open is one of the big four, so its revenue is probably three or four times the amount of a standard ATP event from the television side of things." Aside from the prize money, a grand slam win "can end up being worth a lot more to a player." Sproule added, "It depends on their marketability. It depends on to some degree, but not all degree, where they are from and how much they travel around the world. If they speak other languages" (THE NATIONAL, 1/13).