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ATP chief diagnosed with motor neurone disease

ESPN staff
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Brad Drewitt will enter a transitional period as ATP executive chairman and president © AP
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The Association of Tennis Professionals is on the hunt for a new president following the news that Brad Drewett has been diagnosed with motor neurone disease.

Drewett, who took over from Adam Helfant as executive chairman and president in January 2012, will continue in his current role on an interim basis as the board begins its search process for his successor.

"It has been a privilege to serve as executive chairman and president of the ATP, an organisation that I've been a part of for more than 35 years since I became a professional tennis player," Drewett, a former top 40 player, said.

"I hold the ATP very close to my heart, and it's with sadness that I make the decision to enter this transition period due to my ill-health."

Roger Federer, president of the ATP Player Council said: "Brad has become a good friend of mine over the years and this is very sad news for all of us at the ATP and the entire tennis community.

"He is well liked and respected by everyone and has done a tremendous job in leading the ATP over the past 12 months, overseeing some major initiatives and a record-breaking year in 2012.

"His dedication and service to the sport over the years has been truly admirable and he has been a central figure in helping to grow the ATP product across the globe. Our thoughts are with him and his family during this difficult time."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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