Who would have thought that Gerard Pique could potentially save international tennis?
The Spain and Barcelona footballer has come up with a new format for international competition that would rival the Davis Cup.
Pique has been in Madrid this week to share his ideas with executives and players, according to the Telegraph.
And the Spaniard has even received public support from three of the sport’s biggest names: Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.
Pique’s vision for international tennis is a 16-team single location tournament played over 10 days.
There would be a sizeable amount of prize money available and the workload would be heavily reduced compared to the Davis Cup, which is spread across months of the year.
Currently, Davis Cup matches are played across three days over weekends in February, April, September and November. As a result, several players do not participate in the competition.
Murray and Pique have spoken
Murray, who has exchanged messages with Pique, offered a ringing endorsement.
"I think that it's a really exciting idea,” Murray said. “If it comes off, I think it would be a very, very good thing for tennis.
"I think there's still a lot of things that need to be worked out before it potentially happens, but I think it would be a very good thing for tennis.
"Tennis needs an event like that, and I think it would be very good."
Nadal: Tennis has been static
Meanwhile, Pique’s compatriot, Nadal, called it a “fantastic initiative”.
"For many years they have been static,” the 14-time Grand Slam winner said. “They haven't moved with the times or looked for new solutions.
"Pique is part of a group that wants to create a World Cup that would be a great and very interesting tournament to compete in. It would be a fantastic initiative if it goes through and hopefully it will."
Djokovic added: "To see one of the football greats coming to the tennis world and trying to support it personally, but also in some structural business way, can only bring positives to our sport. We did talk several times.
“The schedule is quite complicated, but I'm really glad that there are people like Gerard that are willing to invest the time and energy to make this game better, so hopefully it's going to come to life."
Support from such high-profile figures will ensure Pique’s idea doesn’t go unnoticed.
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