ECC Antwerp

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ECC Antwerp
Defunct tennis tournament
Founded 1982
Ended 1998
Event name European Champions' Championship (1982-1985)
The European Community Championship (1986-1998)
Location Antwerp, Belgium
Venue Sportpaleis
Tour Invitational/Exhibition (1982–1991)
ATP World Series tournaments (1992-1994)
ATP Championship Series (1996-1997)
ATP International Series Gold (1998)
Surface Carpet (Indoor) (1982-1996)
Hardcourt (1997-1998)

The European Community Championship was a professional tennis tournament held from 1982 until 1998 in Antwerp, Belgium. The tournament was held as a special invitational/exhibition event run outside the Grand Prix series, and not earning any ATP ranking points until 1992, when the tournament became part of the ATP Tour. While an exhibition tournament, invitations were extended to players who won a tournament title in Europe during that year. The surface of the tournament was indoor carpet.

The inaugural event was held in December 1982 offering a $700,000 purse for 24 players field while the high level (Super Series) European Grand Prix events like the Italian Open or indoor tournament in Wembley, London offered only $300,000 and $200,000 respectively.

It was called European Champions' Championship and from 1986 was renamed to European Community Championship (ECC). Its nickname was "Gold Racquet" tournament because if a player won the tournament three times within a 5 year span, he would receive also a special trophy, a life-size, 13.2-pound gold racquet studded with 1,420 diamonds valued at $1,000,000. The Proximus Diamond Games, a WTA Tour event held in Antwerp since 2002, has a similar trophy system.

In 1985 Ivan Lendl won his 3rd title within 4 years and received the $200,000 winners prize together with the Gold Racquet. In 1991 Boris Becker spoiled Lendl's quest for a $1.25 million prize ($250,000 prize money plus the $1 million racquet) at the ECC in Antwerp by beating him, 6-4, 7-5, in the semifinals. Had Lendl won, he would have kept the gold-and-diamond racquet trophy valued at about $1 million, adding to his from 1985. He was in the running for a second after victories in 1987 and 1989, but wound up with only $100,000 that year.

Past winners and runner-ups[edit]

Year
Date Final
Prize Money
Champion
Runner-up
Score in final
ATP Tour
1998 Feb 23
$1,000,000
United Kingdom Greg Rusedski Switzerland Marc Rosset 7-6(7-3), 3-6, 6-1, 6-4
1997 Feb 23
$1,000,000
Switzerland Marc Rosset United Kingdom Tim Henman 6-2, 7-5, 6-4
1996 Feb 19
$1,100,000
Germany Michael Stich Croatia Goran Ivanišević 6-3, 6-2, 7-6(7-5)
1995 Not held
1994 Nov 13
$1,100,000
United States Pete Sampras Sweden Magnus Larsson 7-6(7-5), 6-4
1993 Nov 14
$1,100,000
United States Pete Sampras Sweden Magnus Gustafsson 6-1, 6-4
1992 Nov 15
$1,000,000
Netherlands Richard Krajicek Australia Mark Woodforde 6-2, 6-2
Special / Invitational event
1991 Dec 8
$1,250,000
United States Aaron Krickstein Germany Boris Becker walkover
1990 Oct 21
$1,100,000
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Goran Ivanišević France Henri Leconte 6-2, 7-6(8-6), 4-6, 4-6, 6-1
1989 Oct 29
$1,000,000
Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl Czechoslovakia Miloslav Mečíř 6-2, 6-2, 1-6, 6-4
1988 Nov 6
$940,000
United States John McEnroe Soviet Union Andrei Chesnokov 6-1, 7-5, 6-2
1987 Nov 1
$940,000
Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl Czechoslovakia Miloslav Mečíř 5-7, 6-1, 6-4, 6-3
1986 Nov 10
$940,000
United States John McEnroe Czechoslovakia Miloslav Mečíř 6-3, 1-6, 7-6(7-5), 5-7, 6-2
1985 Nov 3
$850,000
Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl United States John McEnroe 1-6, 7-6(7-5), 6-2, 6-2
1984 Nov 18
$800,000
Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl Sweden Anders Järryd 6-1, 6-2, 6-2
1983 Nov 20
$750,000
United States John McEnroe United States Gene Mayer 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
1982 Dec 5
$700,000
Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl United States John McEnroe 3-6, 7-6(7-2), 6-3, 6-3

Doubles[edit]

Jaar Winner Runner-up Score
1998 South Africa Wayne Ferreira
Russia Yevgeny Kafelnikov
Spain Tomás Carbonell
Spain Francisco Roig
7-5, 3-6, 6-2
1997 South Africa David Adams
France Olivier Delaître
Australia Sandon Stolle
Czech Republic Cyril Suk
3-6, 6-2, 6-1
1996 Sweden Jonas Björkman
Sweden Nicklas Kulti
Russia Yevgeny Kafelnikov
Netherlands Menno Oosting
6-4, 6-4
1995 Not held
1994 Sweden Jan Apell
Sweden Jonas Björkman
Netherlands Hendrik Jan Davids
Canada Sébastien Lareau
4-6, 6-1, 6-2
1993 Canada Grant Connell
United States Patrick Galbraith
South Africa Wayne Ferreira
Spain Javier Sánchez
6-3, 7-6
1992 United States John Fitzgerald
Sweden Anders Järryd
United States Jared Palmer
United States Patrick McEnroe
6-2, 6-2

References[edit]