The Abierto Mexicano de Tennis in Acapulco is planning to build a new stadium with a capacity of 10,000-12,000 people, citing the popularity of the event. However, current World No. 1 Roger Federer decided to give the tournament a miss after making his way to the top of the ATP rankings following his win at the Rotterdam Open.
However, Alejandro Burillo, the Grupo Pegaso director who own the rights to the Mexican tournament, is not perturbed by the snub and revealed that the organisers can still attract crowds to fill in the new stadium without the Swiss maestro's presence.
Rafael Nadal was expected to take part but pulled out at the last moment following a relapse of a hip injury, which also forced him out of the Australian Open at the quarter-final stage.
Meanwhile, Federer became the oldest world number one in tennis following his quarter-final victory over Robin Haase in Rotterdam, and subsequently went on to win the tournament for the third time in his career. The 36-year-old broke Andre Agassi's long-standing record – the American was 33 when he reached the summit in 2003.
Federer beat Nadal to the number one rank, with the players only separated by a mere 155 points before Rotterdam. The Spaniard had managed to hold on to his spot at the top after reaching the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, despite Federer winning the Grand Slam.
The Swiss maestro's participation had led to record crowds at Rotterdam, something that the Swiss ace brings to a tournament given his immense popularity. However, Burillo insists that they do not need Federer to fill stadiums as they are extremely popular either way.
"We don't need him," said Burillo, as quoted by the Express.
"There is nothing that promotes Acapulco like this tournament does, and we'd like that in the future, they do it even more," added Hector Astudillo Flores, the chief of Guerriero, the Mexican state to which Acapulco belongs.