Nasser Al Khelaifi and its circuit Prime Minister has fallen are in Madrid these days for the dispute of the fourth paddle tennis tournament of their new project whose clear objective is to dispossess, in collusion with the International Padel Federation (FIP), to Spain for the leadership and power it has achieved in recent years in this sport thanks to the drive of World Padel Tourbased in Madrid and positioned as the professional circuit of reference worldwide.
Al Khelaifialso president of PSGhas proposed to put an end to this Spanish domination thanks to the economic power injected by the investment group Qatar Sports Investments. The first of the proofs of this is that the circuit of Prime Minister has fallen has premiered with its three initial competitions in Doha, Rome and Pariswhere the matches were played on the same courts that host Roland Garrosone of the most prestigious tournaments in world tennis.
These three events Prime Minister has fallen have had a category Major, the maximum stipulated distinction. However, the tournament Madrid It has been undervalued and has a P1 category, which means that it distributes half the prize money compared to its three predecessors. This is a clear sign of intent to Al Khelaifi to strip the world padel of any Spanish influence along with the approval of the Italian Luigi Carraro, president of the International Federation, curiously founded in 1991 in Madrid.
At a sporting level, the dominance of spain it is more than proven just by looking at the world rankings. In the masculine, Ale Galán, Juan Lebrón, Paquito Navarro or Alejandro Ruiz are within the top-10, while in the female category the eight best players in the world are Spanish, being Alexandra Salazar right now number 1 in the world.
In addition, it is worth noting the importance of the World Padel Tour in the Spanish industry. The growth of paddle tennis as a sport, hand in hand with the international circuit, has facilitated the development of an industry around this sport with national companies that have multiplied their business in recent years.
Paddle tennis has not only given the ‘sorpasso’ to tennis in number of practitioners in Spain, with the 96,872 licenses registered at the end of the year 2021 compared to the 80,318 that Spanish tennis recorded, but it has also been revealed as a driving element for the local industry.
This is the case of companies like StarViethe blade manufacturer based in Azuqueca de Henares (Guadalajara) which has gone from manufacturing 1,000 per month in 2015 to multiplying that figure by ten, to total 120,000 blades planned for this year 2022.
Another reference in the sector in terms of blades, but also other products, Bullpadelexceeded the level of 30 million euros in turnover despite the restrictions due to the pandemic.
Similar cases are those of the also manufacturer of blades Noxthe track builder Help the e-commerce platform Our paddlewith revenue growth of 124%, 138% and 253%, respectively, between 2016 and 2020.
With all this, it can be summarized that the Spanish paddle tennis industry has grown in triple digits, between 120 and 250%, in the last five years driven by the showcase of the World Padel Tour.
In recent years, the world’s first professional padel circuit has led the transition of a discipline that has gone from being considered as an occasional practice to becoming one of the fastest growing global sports thanks to the support provided by a competition, created and managed from our country and which is now threatened by money from Qatar.