Local bank DBS partners Singapore Slammers as team sponsor for inaugural season

Chairman of Singapore Slammers and internationally acclaimed cricketer Sunil Gavaskar (right) and Piyush Gupta (left), CEO of DBS group, pose with very large tennis rackets after a press conference in Singapore on Nov 20, 2014. Local bank DBS an
Chairman of Singapore Slammers and internationally acclaimed cricketer Sunil Gavaskar (right) and Piyush Gupta (left), CEO of DBS group, pose with very large tennis rackets after a press conference in Singapore on Nov 20, 2014. Local bank DBS announced on Thursday a partnership with the Singapore Slammers, the home team for International Premier Tennis League (IPTL), a new team tennis tournament founded by Indian doubles player Mahesh Bhupathi. -- PHOTO: AFP

Local bank DBS announced on Thursday a partnership with the Singapore Slammers, the home team for International Premier Tennis League (IPTL), a new team tennis tournament founded by Indian doubles player Mahesh Bhupathi.

The deal will see DBS become team sponsors of the local side, which boasts of former world No. 1 Andre Agassi and women's tour No. 1 Serena Williams.

Said Piyush Gupta, DBS Bank's group chief executive officer: "We look forward to being part of an event that brings top-level sporting talent to Singapore, in a high-octane tennis and entertainment format that Singapore has never experienced before."

The four-leg event, which will be in town for the Singapore stop from Dec 2-4, will also feature Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych, legends such as Lleyton Hewitt and Pat Rafter, as well as women's player Daniela Hantuchova competing in Singapore's colours.

The event will kick off in Philippines before coming to Singapore. It will then move on to India and Dubai.

Star names such as Roger Federer, this year's US Open champion Marin Cilic, France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Ana Ivanovic and Caroline Wozniacki will play for other teams.

The IPTL is largely modelled after the success of cricket's Indian Premier League. The game will introduce a new team format, featuring one-set matches and innovations such as a "power point" and a shot clock.

The IPTL will feature a total of 21 Grand Slam winners in its inaugural season, with the winning team winning US$1 million (S$1.3 million).