focus: qizhong stadium



qi zhong stadium

Since 2005, Shanghai has hosted the Tennis Masters Cup, the ATP Tour’s year-end tournament. It wasn’t lost on TSF that the facility, completed in October ’05, was erected specifically for this purpose.

Scorelines: Rafa Nadal and David Ferrer have reached the semifinals from the Gold Group. Had Ferrer not routed Richard Gasquet 6-1, 6-1, the Frenchman would be in the semis instead of Rafa. Meanwhile, the Red Group semis are still up in the air, with Roger Federer, Andy Roddick, and Fernando Gonzalez still in contention. Barring injury withdrawals from these three, Nikolay Davydenko is officially out of the tournament.

FYI: The Shanghai Qizhong Forest Sports City Tennis Center is located in the Minhang District, southwest of the city. The environmentally-conscious design was the brainchild of architect Mitsuru Senda and his Environment Design Institute (EDI). “In many cases, sports facilities involve very big spaces,” says EDI’s design policy, “and it is therefore necessary to consider closely just what influence they will have on the surrounding environment.”

From this philosophy came a 15,000-seat arena considered the largest tennis venue in Asia. A bird’s-eye view of the arena’s roof shows a peony, which is an homage to the country’s national (favorite) flower. The roof, capable of withstanding typhoon-strong winds, consists of eight retractable “petals” which take 8 minutes to retract or cover the stadium.

qi zhong stadium

See more photos of the stadium (plus a virtual tour) after the cut…