Roger Federer signs up for Brisbane International

Pat Rafter at the Brisbane International Tennis Tournament.
Pat Rafter at the Brisbane International Tennis Tournament. Supplied

SEVENTEEN-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer will travel to Queensland to compete at the Brisbane International 2014.

The international tennis star, regarded by many as the greatest of all time, is the first player to be announced for the 2014 tournament. It will  first tilt at the Brisbane event.

Minister for Tourism and Major Events Jann Stuckey said the announcement was a huge tourism and events coup for Queensland and would be welcomed by tennis fans throughout the country.

"Federer is regarded as one of the greatest tennis players of all time and I have no doubt his participation will add to the excitement of the Brisbane International 2014," she said.

"With a worldwide following of loyal fans the Olympic Gold and Silver medal winner will be a strong drawcard for the event.

"This is a great start to what is sure to be a high-quality field for the Brisbane International and is consistent with the way the Newman Government has been serving up high-calibre sporting events and boosting tourist visitation to the State."

The tournament is a major event supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland to drive visitation the State.

Federer said he was looking forward to playing before his fans in Queensland.

"I've heard many great things from the other players. They say it's a very friendly tournament, fan friendly, player friendly," Federer said.

"What else do you expect to be quite honest, in Australia you guys do great work."

"For some time we've been in contact with Brisbane [International] and I saw how the tournament got stronger and stronger... and the connection with Pat Rafter, him having the arena named after him I think is great."

Brisbane International Tournament Director Cameron Pearson was delighted Federer has chosen to begin his 2014 season in Brisbane.

"Roger Federer is a global superstar and arguably the most accomplished tennis player in history. His attendance at this event will be a legacy for future generations," Mr Pearson said.

"We have been in discussions with Roger for some time and he has seen this tournament develop into one of the premier events in Australia. His attendance solidifies the quality of the Brisbane International and the appeal the tournament has. 

"When Roger steps onto Pat Rafter Arena for the first time, it is going to be something special."

The tournament will take place at the Queensland Tennis Centre, Brisbane, from  December 29  to January 5.

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