To mark the start of the Sony Ericsson Open 2009, top-ranked tennis players Venus Williams and Andy Murray were seen playing ‘Traffic Tennis’, rallying with each other while standing on the roofs of two vehicles, stuck in traffic on Ocean Drive, Miami.
Traffic Tennis was set against the signature art deco backdrop of South Beach while onlookers marvelled at the sights of tennis being played where they would not naturally expect it.
When asked about her experience, world number five, female player; Venus Williams commented: “The Sony Ericsson Open is one of the most entertaining and glamorous tournaments on the calendar. This is not only due to its location but also the activities that surround the tournament, taking tennis off the court and increasing the excitement.”
World number four, male player, Andy Murray said: “I always look forward to coming back to Miami and playing in the Sony Ericsson Open. It's one of the most exciting tournaments on the calendar and events like these help generate a tremendous amount of exposure for our sport."
Corporate vice president and head of global communications and PR, Aldo Liguori said: “Sony Ericsson is known as a challenger brand and recognised for its passion and innovation. ‘Traffic Tennis’ perfectly shows we were able to take the game to a new scenario and audiences simultaneously, thus energising the total experience of the Sony Ericsson Open."
The stunt involved modifying two SUVs with platforms and safety harnesses by a stunt rigger to the roof of the cars. The game was played on Ocean Drive to capture the imagination of South Beach and set against the backdrop of a world renowned art deco architecture hub to create an iconic image that captures the essence of 2009 Sony Ericsson Open.
Sony Ericsson is able to activate the ‘lifestyle factor’ through the tournament, which in turn help to widen its appeal in the multimedia age and take tennis beyond the confines of the court to new audiences. At this year’s Sony Ericsson Open, attendees can experience the innovative design and functionality of Sony Ericsson products and accessories in the Experience booth and receive the latest Tennis updates through a text messaging programme by texting ‘Tennis’ to 32391 to get daily tournament updates. Coco Walk and Mary Brickell Village will also see some action as Sony Ericsson extends the tennis theme into the nightlife of Miami. In addition to player appearances, there will be an opportunity to experience the latest Sony Ericsson mobile phones and receive special offers from Best Buy.
After a fantastic 2008 tournament, with Nikolay Davydenko and Serena Williams both triumphing, 2009 is set to be another fantastic event as Serena attempts a record-breaking sixth crown. The 2009 Sony Ericsson Open will be played March 25 - April 5 at Crandon Park, Miami and features the world’s top men and women tennis players battling for a total prize fund of US$9 million.
Sony Ericsson is the title sponsor of the Sony Ericsson Open, the unofficial fifth grand slam. The sponsorship has enabled Sony Ericsson to engage with consumers in countries as diverse as Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Qatar, Russia, USA and Brazil while achieving its goal of energising their experience through the integration of mobile phone technology.
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