Two Grand Slam trophies, two Davis Cup wins, nearly a hundred ATP titles and over 1,500 wins in various ATP tournaments - we will get to see all that in a single match at the opening of the 25th Vegeta Croatia Open on July 19 in Umag. Goran Ivanišević, Thomas Muster, Henri Leconte and Mansour Bahrami will play an exhibition match and remind us of the times when they ruled the world of tennis, thus marking an important anniversary of Croatia's biggest and most popular ATP tournament.
Umag's first finalist, Wimbledon champion and former number two Goran Ivaniševićpromised the audience would have great fun but did not forget about the final score. "It will be tough; a few years back Thomas even returned to active tennis, while Henri and Mansour play doubles regularly. They are all excellent tennis players and I am confident it will be an interesting and exciting match. Naturally, we will all have some fun in the process," Goran announced.
The first "king of Umag", former number one and winner of Roland Garros Thomas Muster will return to the court where he lifted the winning trophy three times, the last time 19 years ago. "I have had a special relationship with Umag ever since I was I child, when I used to come here with my parents on vacation. That is why I played at the tournament regularly, even during the war, when many players declined to play. I am greatly honored I have been named Umag's honorary citizen by the town authorities. I cherish every win but those earned in Umag are especially dear to me," Muster reminisced.
Nowadays, Henri Leconte and Mansour Bahrami, former Roland Garros finalists - the former in the singles competition and the latter in the doubles competition - often play on the ATP Champions Tour with other tennis legends and are extremely fit even though both are in their 50s. "I am coming to win, no matter who I will play with," Leconte said, while Bahrami, known as a great entertainer, said he was looking forward to his arrival in Umag as he had heard all the best about the tournament. "Ivanišević and Muster are both great tennis players, and it will be a great pleasure to play both with them and against them. I know the fans in Umag know and appreciate great tennis and I will give my best there," Bahrami announced.
The exhibition match will be held at the ATP Stadium, starting at 9 PM, immediately after the opening ceremony of the 25th Vegeta Croatia Open. This year again the Umag-based tournament has attracted some of the biggest names in the world of tennis, including Croatia's best tennis player and winner of the 2012 tournament in Umag, Marin Čilić, who was one of the first to confirm his participation in the tournament. Alongside top-quality tennis, Umag will once again provide excellent entertainment thanks to the ATP Party Nights program, and host the rich Istria Gourmet Festival, which will offer all the best of the Istrian food, wines and olive oils in one place.