Saturday, June 4, 2016

Haas named tournament director of BNP Paribas Open

Former world No. 2 Tommy Haas watches a match on the
stadium court at the $100,000 Comerica Bank Challenger
in Aptos, Calif., last August. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Former world No. 2 Tommy Haas has been named the tournament director of the prestigious BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, chief operating officer Steve Birdwell announced Friday.
   Haas succeeds Ray Moore, who resigned in March after making controversial comments about female professional players.
   Haas, a 38-year-old native of Germany who also holds U.S. citizenship, captured 15 singles and seven doubles titles on the ATP World tour and won a silver medal in singles in the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
   He was the runner-up to Milos Raonic in the last singles match ever played in the SAP Open in San Jose, Calif. The tournament ended a 125-year run in Northern California in 2013. Haas also won the 2009 SAP doubles title with Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic.
   Haas reached the quarterfinals at Indian Wells in 2007 and 2008 and last August defeated 17-year-old Russian Andrey Rublev, the world's No. 1 junior in 2014, in the first round of the $100,000 Comerica Bank Challenger in Aptos, Calif., before losing to Australian veteran Matthew Ebden in the second round.
   Moore, a 69-year-old former touring pro from South Africa, quit the day after disparaging the women's game.
   "In my next life when I come back, I want to be someone in the WTA because they ride the coattails of the men," Moore said during a news conference before the BNP men's and women's finals. "They don't make any decisions, and they are lucky. They are very, very lucky.
   "If I was a lady player, I'd go down every night on my knees and thank God that Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal were born, because they have carried this sport."
   Moore later apologized, saying his comments were "in extremely poor taste and erroneous."
   Moore, along with former partner Charlie Pasarell, spent decades building the BNP Paribas Open into "the fifth Grand Slam."

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