Stuttgart. The ladies will once again receive a visit from two men at the 39th Porsche Tennis Grand Prix from 16 to 24 April: Michael Stich and Michael Chang in Duel of Legends, facing each other in the Berenberg Classics. The former Grand Slam winners will meet in Stuttgart’s Porsche Arena at 6.30 pm on Monday, April 18.
Now a tradition at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix, whose field this year will once again contain the world’s crème de la crème with seven Top 10 players, the exhibition match is one of the highlights on the first day of the main draw encounters.
“Our audience will once again be served up with a piece of tennis history by Michael Stich and Michael Chang,” said Tournament Director Markus Günthardt. “They both made their mark on the game over many years playing unforgettable matches.”
The career of Michael Stich, 47, is full of superlatives. En route to winning Wimbledon in 1991, the German beat, one after the other: French Open champion Jim Courier, the world No. 1 Stefan Edberg and then, in the final, Boris Becker.
The doubles final the year after in which he partnered with John McEnroe lasted 301 minutes and has gone down in history as the longest doubles final of all time. Together with Boris Becker, he won Olympic gold at the 1992 Games in Barcelona. In 1993, he was also a member of the German team that won the Davis Cup.
American Michael Chang, 43, served up the most memorable match of his career in Paris in 1989. In the last 16 of the French Open, the then 17-year-old — son of Taiwanese immigrants — drove the great Ivan Lendl to the verge of despair with his unorthodox game. Plagued by cramps and close to retiring, he eventually won 4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3. He went on to beat Stefan Edberg in the final to become the youngest ever Grand Slam champion.
“Michael is a real fighter on the court,” says Michael Stich. “I can still well remember our last match in Cincinnati in 1995. Though I made CNN’s sports news with the “shot of the day,” I nevertheless lost the match. It alone is a reason why I’m really looking forward to playing him once again.”
Voted by the players as their favorite tournament in its category once again in 2015, the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix marks the start of the stars’ preparations for the French Open. Among those competing will be Porsche Brand Ambassadors Angelique Kerber and Maria Sharapova.
Recently crowned Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber, a member of Porsche Team Germany, will be returning to Stuttgart as the titleholder. Superstar Maria Sharapova won the tournament three years in succession from 2012 to 2014.
Tickets for the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix and the Berenberg Classics can be booked on the phone (+49 711 / 2 555 555) or via the internet at www.easyticket.de.