Hit for Haiti 2

Photo by PAUL CROCK/AFP/Getty Images

Looks like there is going to be a second Hit for Haiti fundraiser at Indian Wells: Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal to play Haiti benefit on March 12. Good times for a good cause!

Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, who combined have won 44 Grand Slam singles title, will compete in a “Hit for Haiti” fundraiser on March 12 of the BNP Paribas Open in efforts to raise a minimum of $1 million for Haiti relief efforts.

Larry Ellison, who purchased the tournament in December, decided to coordinate a second Hit for Haiti exhibition after seeing the success it had at the Australian Open, where hundreds of thousands of dollars were raised for Haiti relief efforts.

The event will feature Roger Federer and Pete Sampras playing Rafael Nadal and Andre Agassi. The event will be broadcast live on the Tennis Channel beginning at 7:30 p.m.

The net proceeds from ticket sales to this session will be donated to the American Red Cross for their relief efforts in Haiti. Fans will also be able to donate to the relief effort through text messages and on-site contributions throughout the evening and event. In addition to these fund-raising efforts, Ellison will make a personal donation to this very special cause.

“When I saw the first Hit for Haiti event in Australia, I was very moved by the players coming together, on the eve of an important tournament, for such a worthy cause,” said Ellison. “I wanted to bring together an exceptional group of players, with an unprecedented amount of Grand Slam titles, at the BNP Paribas Open. Our goal is to leave a memorable impression on fans, while raising a substantial amount of money that will directly impact the needs of people in Haiti.”

51 Responses

  1. natch says:

    Gah! Rafa and Andre…a great cause…
    *packs bags*
    *sets DVR for March 12*
    Thank you, Larry, for arranging this, even if I’m forced to look at Sampras again. ;)

    • miri says:

      I don’t like Agassi or Samprass and this still makes me sad I picked Miami over IW.

      • natch says:

        *arches back*
        *hisses*
        To not like Andre…why, it’s un-American! ;)

        You know what? My kids who pick Pete over Andre always say I’m meaner to them. Heh. Now, Rafa or Federer? My only bias is who I lust after. I like them both as tennis players.

        • CC says:

          I know very little about Andre and Pete, cause I pretty much stopped watching tennis when they were at their prime. All I know is that they’re both very hairy men and that scares me. ;)

          Anyways, the event is awesome sauce, I bloody well hope they show it on telly here too!

  2. jba says:

    yay, can’t wait!

  3. Maggie says:

    Rafa made some pretty strong comments condemning what Andre said in his book. I wonder how that dynamic will play out…

    • jba says:

      oh yeah. i forgot about that. hmmmm.. that indeed will be interesting. but it just occurred to me that they could be playing singles. pete vs. andre. rafa vs. fed. or something like that.

      • miri says:

        If they are playing doubles, a nice pair of “old/young” “baseliner/server” combo would be Rafa/Samprass and Federer/Agassi.

      • Maggie says:

        From the quote above I thought it was Fed/Pete vs. Rafa/Andre. but maybe I’m reading it wrong?

        I agree with Miri though, it would be great to have the different styles of Pete and Rafa vs. Roger and Andre.

    • natch says:

      Having a disagreement doesn’t mean you can’t work or play with someone. It doesn’t even mean that you dislike them. It just means you disagree with what they said.

      • miri says:

        Yep! And both guys seem like they are adult enough to realize that.

      • Maggie says:

        Of course, it’s just something I thought of. I have no doubt that either of them would be anything other than professional.

        I mean Andre said some not nice things about Pete in the book, but obviously the same professionalism applies there as well.

  4. Susanna728 says:

    Tournament website describes the match this way:

    The event will feature 44 Grand Slam titles on the same court with Roger Federer and Pete Sampras playing Rafael Nadal and Andre Agassi.

  5. faeaki7 says:

    Yes Susanna thats the way I read it, 44 grand slam titles on the same court must mean that its all of them together surely?
    This is gonna be awsome, so jealous I am not there?

  6. jimmy says:

    This is so much win. The two biggest rivalries that have generated and divided opinions in spades; the 2 greatest double acts in Open tennis history – together on one court!

    Luckily Pistol Pete and Rafa are not playing in one team. That wouldn’t be so competitive, would it?

    2 alpha males on one side. And on the other – 2 guys starting at their nemesis….dismayed :)

  7. aRafaelite says:

    Rafa and Agassi playing together – awesome! Hope there’s a live stream!

    Having recently read “Open” I don’t think Andre said anything out of order about Pete (and I always liked Pete) – the media pretty much twisted all his comments out of context and Pete, Rafa and Fed all commented on what Andre alledgedly said without having read the book. I understand Rafa & Fed’s dismay over the drugs revelations and hating tennis, but maybe people should actually read what he wrote before getting hot and bothered about it. Anyway, I think they are all professional enough not to let any animosity show on court other than to maybe make a joke out of it all. Should be highly entertaining!

  8. mary says:

    OMG, OMG, OMG!!!!
    Can’t wait to see this. I’m ecstatic!!!!! Interesting though how it is Federer with Sampras. I don’t care really & I’m looking forward to it. ;-)

  9. Atch2 says:

    Sound like it’s going to be fun. And anyone that’s not Anna Kornnikova participating is good for me, but having other female players there would’ve been fun too.

  10. Atch2 says:

    And it says a lot about Rafa’s pulling power that even though he’s dropped to no. 3-4 ranking and recovering from an injury, that he can still attract magazine covers, press coverage about the practices and MV, and now be asked to play this charity event.

    • Missy says:

      *giggles*

      Atch2, absolutely! The amount of control Rafa has on so many of us is just ridiculous (not that I’m complaining :D)

      He could be ranked 1000 in the world and his fans would STILL love him, root for him, and people would still be lining up around the block to bet him into their photo shoots, exhos, etc.

      He truly transcends tennis. It’s as simple as that. :)

  11. teejustice says:

    Awesome! Happy that TTC will be airing it live. I think the way they list the pairing is probably the best. Pete and Roger are noted to be close, although I think the reverse combo would be interesting. I was a major Sampras fan and did not like Agassi at all, although respected his game. Now I have much more respect for his game and really like him off court. Sampras, not so much (off court). Can’t say enough about what all of these men do for charity and humanity though.

    • Atch2 says:

      Actually would’ve wanted to see Rafa/Rog on 1 side, and any other pairing on the other side.

      • teejustice says:

        Yes, that too. I figured they would only mix old/young even though an exo.

      • faeaki7 says:

        I would love to see Rafa/Roger to play together, Rafa has talked about it way back in 08 but Roger has been known to say that he prefers to play with one of his swiss mates on the tour, well maybe because of their rivalry he feels its too close to home, its amazing thoug how cool Rafa was compared to Fed on the subject.

  12. Missy says:

    AWE.SOME.

    I cannot WAIT to see this! I remember during the first ‘Hit for Haiti’ exho, (Rafa’s very first appearance in this type of exho – with the exception of his ‘Arthur Ashe Kid’s day’ debut in 08, correcto?), anways, I recall how one of the commentators at the start of the exho was like “I don’t expect we’ll get more than a mere handful of words out of Rafa. I think Rafa will be overwhelmed by all of the other personalities on court.”

    HA! Rafa was so Rafadorably playful. He cracked jokes, interacted, and even though it was play, he made some fantastic shots! Needless to say, the commentator retracted his original fears saying, “Rafa has REALLY entered into the spirit of things. I am really impressed with him. I’m impressed with everybody, of course, but especially him.”

    As soon as the exho was concluded I just KNEW that those who though Rafa would not be able to handle such a chatty/interactive event, would be overtly excited to see that he can, AND MORE. :D
    I didn’t doubt for a second that he would be participating in many more of these types of thingies in the future. He’s simply a joy to watch and every thing he does is just so exciting. I FLOVED seeing them all interacting together, and I especially floved seeing Rafa show just what an adorable ham he is! :D :D

    ****************************

    How great is it that it’s going to be aired online?! I am SO ecstatic about that. But from what I gather from this quote, it seems that the match will be played in a slot as if it were a “normal” competitive match during the tourney. Does you guys think that means it will also be aired on TV?

    “The match will be held as part of the regular evening session on Friday, March 12. There are still tickets available as of post time – I called this morning and the “Loge” seats were $40 each.”

    • Missy says:

      I was watching the recording of the first HFH the other day. Rafa is SUCH a ham and he’s such the perfect Lego piece (fitting in with everyone, having a level of interaction/moment with everyone – no matter how small. Even though he plays in a sport were it’s “I”, he epitomizes what team work is all about.) Flove him. :))

    • miri says:

      Rafa’s very first appearance in this type of exho – with the exception of his ‘Arthur Ashe Kid’s day’ debut in 08, correcto?

      He’s organized and appeared in two exhibitions with footy player Iker Casillas. Those raised money for malaria prevention. He’s probably been in some others, but those came to mind first.

      • Missy says:

        *grins* Yup! I remember that one. He was so adorable in that one as well. It was hysterical how competitive he got during the soccer part of the exho. At times, the actual pro soccer players had show him whose boss, seeing as Rafa was trying to out-do them at what they do. :D

        I guess by “this type of exho”, I meant an interactive tennis exho with other tennis players. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if they played exhos like this on a regular basis? They could have all different kinds of players participating and the cause could vary from cause to cause.

        • Missy says:

          “I guess by “this type of exho”, I meant an interactive tennis exho with other tennis players.”

          Not forgetting that Daveed, Feli, and Moya were there too, of course. :)

  13. Missy says:

    “The event will be broadcast live on the Tennis Channel beginning at 7:30 p.m.”

    DO’H!

    *mumbles* never mind…

    *sheepish grin*

  14. Necitas says:

    Just like the Hit for Haiti in AO, have fun Rafa! :)

  15. Atch2 says:

    If IW starts 8 March, wouldn’t this charity match be in the middle of the tournament?

    • Emma R says:

      I have it down as starting on the 11th March, which didn’t make much sense to me either – though I guess Rafa and Roger will have byes and it shouldn’t be too taxing. If he can play this before the first round it might be a good way of easing his knee back in again to matches.

      Profoundly hoping for live streaming as well, I’m thinking the Tennis Channel must be subscription?

      • miri says:

        Per their site, qualifying starts on the 8th. Main draw round 1 starts on the 11th and round 2 (as you said, Rafa’s first round) on the 13th.

        I think the charity event will take place during the standard night session on the 12th and “The net proceeds from ticket sales to this session will be donated to the American Red Cross for their relief efforts in Haiti.” more info

  16. miri says:

    I’m so stoked! They’ve added another part to this fundraiser. It’s a women’s match where Stefanie Graf (yay!) and Lindsay Davenport (meh) will take on Martina Navratilova (YAY!) and Justine Henin (meh). That’s 50 Major titles on the court at once – that tops the men’s total by 8. Wooot! Now I really wish I had better seats…but at least I’ll be there.

    They’ve also increased the streaming options so that, hopefully, more people will get to see it:

    The event will be broadcast live in numerous countries around the world, and domestically on the Tennis Channel, beginning at 7:30 PM PST. In addition, live web streaming will be available on bnpparibasopen.org, TennisTV.com, atpworldtour.com, sonyericssonwtatour.com, usta.com, tennis.com, espn360.com, and others. As a show of support, the broadcasters, satellite uplink providers and production teams of the event are picking up all of the production costs to ensure that the maximum amount of money can be generated for the fundraising effort.

    • An says:

      Fantastic that you get to be there for this event Miri! :)
      Enjoy!

    • Atch2 says:

      I’m jealous already, and you tell us you’re going to get to see Steffi and Justine. No fair. They probably thought Agassi will probably bring his better looking and talented half, so might as well ask her to play too.

      Would actually like to see Rafa play doubles alongside Justine bec he once said that he liked her, then tried to correct himself in case someone got the wrong idea.

      Hope Fed makes it to IW so you can see 4 of the greatest men in tennis in the same court.

    • teejustice says:

      WOW! I would flove to see Steffi (my all-time fav) and Martina whom I began to appreciate in the latter part of her career and as I got older. Lucky!

      • miri says:

        I’ve always been a fan of Martina. She was the athlete vs. Everet’s little miss perfect. (I know not a fair way to see Everet, she was an athlete too, but…) Her volleys and net play…amazing. I’ve always wished I could see her and McEnroe team up for mixed doubles…

        • faeaki7 says:

          Chrissie Evert was amazing! she holds the GS at the French doesn’t she? is it 7? I remember her at Wimbledon more than anything of coure they didn’t broadcast much of RG back then, plus I was like 6!

          • miri says:

            She was amazing…just like Federer is amazing…and I feel pretty much the same way about both of them. They make me sleepy.

            • dutchgirl says:

              I’ve always thought of Martina en Chris Evert a bit in the same way as of the rivalry Rafa-Fed.
              I do remember a great RG final between the two women (can’t remember what year). But I always favoured Martina over Chris as well.

              You’re one lucky girl to get to see this all live! And just remember: our view may be better (from behind our screen), but you get the experience!

    • faeaki7 says:

      Oh Miri thanx for this update this is going to be awsome, and yep one for the girls.
      I love Justine and Graf and used to follow Navratilova when I was just a babe. Womens dominant years on the tour You are so lucky to be able to witness so many of these greats at once.!

  17. CC says:

    Hm. Women’s tennis. I’m not bothered. They should have Rafa and Mats. Playing nude tennis. That would draw a crowd and raise funds. And eyebrows.

    • Atch2 says:

      Thank goodness you didn’t suggest Fed do the same thing. I just hope his twins don’t inherit the hairy-gene.