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Boris Becker backs mixed Asian tennis league of current, former players; start aimed for 2014

Boris Becker is backing a new tennis league in Asia featuring former and current players.

The three-time Wimbledon champion is joining ex-players Justin Gimelstob and Mahesh Bhupathi in founding the International Premier Tennis League.

Plans for the league were announced Friday. It will consist of mixed teams in various Asian cities, with a player draft held in January 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. Play is expected to start in December 2014.

Retired players and a number of current top-10 stars plan to participate. Among them are Pete Sampras, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka, Li Na and Caroline Wozniacki.

Becker hopes the league will get "TV networks excited" and "grow into a worldwide property with multiple team owners."