Wimbledon

Noah, Gates join Federer, Nadal for Cape Town charity match

2019-07-04 19:16
Trevor Noah (Gallo Images)
Trevor Noah (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Next year's blockbuster Roger Federer v Rafael Nadal showdown in Cape Town got a further injection of star power with confirmation billionaire American Microsoft founder Bill Gates and South Africa comedian Trevor Noah will form part of the charity match.

News that the two legends of the sport - who share no fewer than 38 Grand Slam titles between them - would he heading to the Mother City spread like wildfire on social media this week after Federer confirmed the news during an interview with Vogue.

On Thursday, the ATP Tour's official website confirmed the pair will do battle on Friday, February 7 at 20:00 in Cape Town in a match forming part of Federer’s 'Match for Africa' series.

The pair will likely head straight to South Africa from Melbourne in Australia following the 2020 Australian Open which concludes on Sunday, February 2.

Tickets for the much-anticipated clash will go on sale in early September and are expected to be in high demand.

However, organisers have promised that tickets will be priced to ensure the match will be accessible to as many fans as possible. All net proceeds will benefit the Roger Federer Foundation’s programmes in the region.

The Cape Town Stadium, built for the 2010 Soccer World Cup, is expected to play host to the match.

Organisers have also confirmed there will be a "curtain raiser" celebrity/professional doubles match pitting Federer and Gates against Nadal and Noah.

Gates, 63, who boasts a net worth in excess of $100 billion (R1.4 trillion) has previously partnered Federer in the Swiss superstar's charity matches around the world.

The level of Noah's tennis isn't well documented, but the Johannesburg-born, New York-based 35-year-old has taken the comedy world by storm and has seen ratings soar since taking over as host of satirical news programme The Daily Show in late 2015.

Federer and Nadal have played in five previous charity matches around the world, but the Cape Town clash - appropriately billed the 'Match in Africa 6' - will be the first in Africa.

“This Match in Africa is a dream come true,” said Federer.

“I will play in my mother’s home country against my toughest rival and friend Rafa Nadal.

"We share not only the love for tennis, but also for the good cause of giving children a better start in education and in life.

"I feel privileged to have other leading philanthropists on board to entertain millions of people in the stadium and on TV. It will be a once-in-a-lifetime moment for my family and I."

Nadal added: “Roger and I have shared so many magical moments on and off the court.

"Travelling with him to Cape Town and playing for the benefit of children is something I am very excited about. It will be my first time in the region with Roger as a tour guide - that will be fun.”

Federer has strong ties to South Africa since his mother Lynette Federer (née Durand) was born in Johannesburg.

In their 39 head-to-head matches to date, Nadal holds a 24-15 advantage.

Both players are currently in action at this year's Wimbledon and are on track to meet in the semi-finals.

 

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