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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.

ECC Antwerp
Defunct tennis tournament
Event nameEuropean Champions' Championship (1982-1985)
The European Community Championship (1986-1998)
TourInvitational/Exhibition (1982–1991)
World Series (1992-1994)
Championship Series (1996-1998)
Founded1982
Abolished1998
Editions16
LocationAntwerp, Belgium
VenueSportpaleis
SurfaceCarpet (Indoor) (1982-1996)
Hard (Indoor) (1997-1998)

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, created by the artist Varozza. This inspired the Proximus Diamond Games, a WTA Tour event held in Antwerp since 2002, to have 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.


Contents

Past finalsEdit

SinglesEdit

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

DoublesEdit

Year Winners Runners-up Score
1992   John Fitzgerald
  Anders Järryd
  Jared Palmer
  Patrick McEnroe
6–2, 6–2
1993   Grant Connell
  Patrick Galbraith
  Wayne Ferreira
  Javier Sánchez
6–3, 7–6
1994   Jan Apell
  Jonas Björkman
  Hendrik Jan Davids
  Sébastien Lareau
4–6, 6–1, 6–2
1995 Not held
1996   Jonas Björkman
  Nicklas Kulti
  Yevgeny Kafelnikov
  Menno Oosting
6–4, 6–4
1997   David Adams
  Olivier Delaître
  Sandon Stolle
  Cyril Suk
3–6, 6–2, 6–1
1998   Wayne Ferreira
  Yevgeny Kafelnikov
  Tomás Carbonell
  Francisco Roig
7–5, 3–6, 6–2

ReferencesEdit