TREAT Huey believes the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL) is drawing awareness and interest in the sport that will benefit the local scene in the long run.
The Filipino-American netter, arguably the most prominent tennis figure in the country today, is the only Philippine representative to see action in the innovative tournament since its inception last year, underlining how far behind the country is in the sport.
But Huey, one of the best doubles players in the world, is convinced the IPTL having a Manila leg will only augur well for Philippine tennis.
“The IPTL is making tennis bigger and bigger and more popular in the Philippines,” Huey said. “It can only help our Davis Cup team and Philippine tennis in general.”
The PH Cuppers haven’t been in the top tier of Asia for quite some time, having been stuck in Group II of the Davis Cup since 2012.
The Filipino netters, who lost to top seed Chinese Taipei in the second round last July, try again in their first tie next year in March against Kuwait.
Huey, though, believes the IPTL is luring more youngsters to the sport, with some even having started their careers already.
“We have some younger kids coming up who could be really good professionals,” Huey said, particularly mentioning Alberto Lim, a homegrown Pinoy netter who’s already one of the world’s top juniors, ranked 24th, as among those who can represent the country.
“Hopefully more and more people will come up and see tennis now and be a bigger sport, something that people would want to play to make tennis bigger in the Philippines, which would be unbelievable,” the Philippine Mavericks standout said.
Huey, who partnered with Serena Williams in the mixed doubles and with Edouard Roger-Vasselin in the men’s doubles in the three-day leg that ended last Tuesday, and the rest of the Mavericks continue their campaign in Delhi until Saturday.