Marion Bartoli sensationally won Wimbledon in 2013, then just as sensationally retired from the game altogether a few weeks later.
Bartoli was busy in her post tennis career with design and fashion when a strange illness hit her in 2016 and she lost a staggering 5 stones but has now regained full fitness and wants to get back on the women tennis circuit. Bartoli attributes her comeback to her illness that left her fearing for her life. At a recent interview with the French newspaper L Equipe she said:
“The stopping of my first career in 2013 was heartbreaking due to a shoulder injury as I finally felt I had mastered everything to win these big tournaments and realize my dreams, if what happened to me in 2016 did not happen I do not think I would have had this feeling as powerful to come to the courts,”
The crowds of the North West will get to watch Marion Bartoli in action when she appears at the Williams BMW Liverpool International Tennis Tournament at Liverpool Cricket Club from 21st to the 24th June.
Williams BMW Liverpool International Tournament director Anders Borg says: “Marion is a fantastic person and a great inspiration to everyone and we very much look forwards to seeing her back on the grass courts of one of the oldest sporting grounds in England, The Liverpool Cricket Club.
The Williams BMW Liverpool International Tennis Tournament is in its 17th year and has grown into the longest running and largest tennis exhibition in Europe – featuring ATP and WTA players warming up for Wimbledon in addition to the ever-popular legends of tennis.
Williams BMW Liverpool, a long-time sponsor and supporter of the tournament, is the new title sponsor of this year’s event.
Tony Crolla, Head of Business for Williams BMW Liverpool said ‘’As a North West based family-owned business with a flagship retail centre in Liverpool serving the city and Merseyside, Williams BMW Liverpool is a long-standing supporter and sponsor of Anders and his prestigious tournament. Our status this year as title sponsor enhances our commitment to supporting sports throughout the North West and to encourage talents at all levels.’’
Also playing in this year’s International will be last year’s sensational quarterfinalist in Men’s Doubles in Wimbledon Neal and Ken Skupski who are born and raised in Liverpool.
Anders Borg added: “The Skupski brother’s progress through the rankings in Men’s doubles has been amazing and to reach the last 8 in the world’s most famous tennis tournament is nothing but astonishing. They have since won their first ATP250 tournament of their career and to me is worth a bet to go all the way at Wimbledon this year! “.
Ken Skupski says: “I played in the first International Anders organized back in 2002 and feel honored and privileged to be able to play doubles with my brother in the same event 16 years later, this tournament is
so important for tennis on Merseyside and the Northern Vision team does a great job to develop and promote tennis in a region more known for its football.’’
Craig Philips – an English real estate developer, television personality and presenter. He is best known for winning the first series of the reality television show Big Brother.
Alan Kennedy – a Liverpool football legend and a winner of five League titles. Not only did he score the winning goal on one European Cup final but was also destined to clinch Liverpool’s success in two!
Bill Addy – the chief executive of the Liverpool BID Company, an independent organization that represents more than 1,500 businesses in Liverpool city centre via the City Central BID and Commercial District BID (Business Improvement District).
The tournament has collected more than 250,000 pounds towards local charities over the years, and this year’s charities are:
Royal Liverpool Hospital – The R Charity raises funds to enable the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust (The Royal) to provide the best possible health care to our patients from Merseyside, Cheshire, Lancashire, North Wales and the Isle of Man.
Leadership Through Sport & Business – prepare and support bright young people who face disadvantage into secure, sustainable, high-quality careers in accounting, business and finance.
The Williams BMW Liverpool International Tennis Tournament was established in 2002 and has over the years attracted a lot of talented players preparing for Wimbledon in Liverpool. The event has had players like Novak Djokovic, David Ferrer, Marat Safin, Caroline Wozniacki in addition to legends like John McEnroe, Goran Ivanisevic, Martina Hingis and Martina Navratilova all preferring Liverpool to other cities in the UK and Europe to get ready for the grass court season.
The Williams BMW Liverpool International has brought in millions of pounds to the city economy since it started in 2002 and a similar event in media value.
The Williams BMW Liverpool International has the largest outdoor corporate catering area in the North West entertaining more than 2000 VIP guests each year.
Northern Vision, the organiser of the event, runs one of the most out reaching CSR programs in the North West offering free tennis lessons at a number of locations in the region including in Liverpool One during a five-week build up to the International.