Summer officially arrived at The Hurlingham Club just in time for day 1 of the BNP Paribas Tennis Classic, as a glorious afternoon of sunshine was cast over centre court - the perfect start to marking 22 years of tennis at the quintessentially English Hurlingham Club. Tennis legends Greg Rusedski and Mansour Bahrami launched the event to the media before VIPs were welcomed to The Hurlingham Club. Celebrity guests, including actresses Emilia Fox and Kara Tointon, opera singer Camilla Kerslake as personalities from the fashion world Lilah Parsons, Henry Conway, Percy Parker, Pips Taylor and Alistair Guy, soaked up the garden party atmosphere. Guests mingled in the perfectly manicured gardens whilst sipping Champagne Lanson, dining on gourmet canapés and Wright Brothers oysters. They were also treated to a spot of magic from world-renowned magician DMC.
The opening match on centre court was between ATP stars Borna Ćorić and Grigor Dimitrov, with Dimitrov proving too strong and coming through 6-2, 6-1. A doubles match between tennis legends Mansour Bahrami/Goran Ivanisevic and Xavier Malisse/Mikael Pernfors followed, with Bahrami/Ivanisevic winning 8-7.
Day 2 saw two of the world’s top players battle it out with fancy shots and footwork in a thrilling match on centre court, as 2015 Wimbledon semifinalist Richard Gasquet took on 2014 Queen’s Club winner and Wimbledon semi-finalist Grigor Dimitrov. The scores were close throughout with fierce rallies and an array of shots, but it was Dimitrov who had the edge and took the win 7-6, 6-4. The legends entertained the audience in the final match of the day with Mansour Bahrami and former British no.1 Greg Rusedski defeating former Canadian Open Champion Mikeal Pernfors and Frenchman Sebastien Grosjean, 6-4.
On Day 3 we were delighted to open up centre court to World No. 6 Tomáš Berdych and World No. 23 Roberto Bautista Agut. Berdych looked comfortable on the grass winning the first set 6-3, but Agut came back in the second set, breaking serve to win 7-5. Despite Agut battling hard, the World No.6 proved too resilient winning a Champion’s tie break 10-8 in the third set. The second match of the day saw World No. 9 and current US Open Champion Marin Cilic take on former World top 10 player Nicolas Almagro. In a tight match with very little between both players, it was Almagro who held on, to defeat the US Open Champion and win an enthralling match 4-6, 7-6, 14-12. The final match of the day was again legends doubles, with the crowd in high spirits as Mansour Bahrami and 2001 Wimbledon Champion Goran Ivanisevic took to the court against former British No.1 Tim Henman and Swedish international Mikael Pernfors, with Henman pleasing a home crowd by winning 7-5.
The final day of the BNP Paribas Tennis Classic saw British no. 3 Kyle Edmund take on World top 20 player Feliciano Lopez. Edmund started strong but it was Lopez who proved too good, taking the win 7-5, 6-3. The final ATP match of the week followed, with an all-Spanish encounter between Nicolas Almagro and Roberto Bautista Agut. Although taking the first set comfortably, the second set proved to be a much tougher test and showed great resilience from Almagro to retained his composure, and eventually clinch the match 6-1, 7-5.
The 2015 BNP Paribas Tennis Classic once again proved to be the perfect appetiser for Wimbledon, with ATP Players and Legends treating guests to a spectacle of first-class tennis whilst enjoying exquisite hospitality in the stunning, tranquil setting of The Hurlingham Club - a hidden gem in the heart of London.