Delray Beach on short list to host Israeli Davis Cup tennis matches

Military conflict forces tournament to relocate

DELRAY BEACH - Delray Beach is in the running to host an Israeli tennis tournament. Several people confirm to NewsChannel 5 a delegation from Israel was in Delray Beach Monday to talk about using the city's tennis center as a new site.

Last week, the International Tennis Federation ruled Israel must move it's Davis Cup match vs Argentina out of Israel because of the ongoing military conflict between Israel and Hamas. The match was scheduled to be in Tel Aviv September 12-14.

The Israel Tennis Association has until Thursday to decide among three options: Move the tournament to a different city, move the tournament to Argentina (where it loses any homecourt advantage), or forfeit.

"We got word last week that Israel was interested in moving their match here," explained Delray Beach City Commissioner Adam Frankel.

He said the tennis center already attracts a lot of attention in the U.S. and now it's showing up on the international radar.

"I just want to do cartwheels because it shows how much Delray Beach has been elevated over the years," pointed out Karen Granger, the president of the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce.

Frankel is hopeful the area's support of tennis and strong Jewish population will make Delray Beach the obvious choice to host the tournament.

"I think we would absolutely be one of the best, if not the best, venue to host it," he said.

He adds it wouldn't cost the city much to put on the tournament.

Match Point, the private group which runs the city's tennis center, said it offered Israel tennis leaders financial help with the relocation.

The president of the chamber of commerce said a tournament of this caliber would only benefit the city.

"That brings in visitors, media, players and they then feed into our restaurants, our shops, our retailers, and our hotels," explained Granger. 

The Jerusalem Post reports New York City, and cities in Poland and Estonia are also on the short list. Frankel says the Israeli delegation visiting Delray Beach was headed to Los Angeles next to scout a location there.

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