Mylan WTT Smash Hits - co-hosted by Elton John and Billie Jean King - raised more than £650,000 for the Elton John AIDS Foundation. Since its inception in 1993, the event has secured than £8.3 million to support HIV prevention and awareness programs all over the world. The 2014 event was the first to be held outside of the U.S.
Before Billie Jean King and Elton John’s teams battled it out on court, they went head-to-head in a live auction contest, raising more than £159,000 for the Foundation. The top-selling items were two US Open ticket packages, which sold for more than £49,000. A Wimbledon package featuring a visit with John McEnroe and Elton John’s autographed piano bench were also auction favourites.
Elton John addressed the capacity crowd when Mylan Chairman Robert J. Coury and CEO Heather Bresch handed the Elton John AIDS Foundation a check for £500,000. “This is a wonderful evening,” said John. “Without Mylan, we couldn't possibly do this. They've made drugs for HIV positive people and we're an HIV positive AIDS Foundation, so the two of us fit hand and glove very well and it's a wonderful relationship. It would be wrong of me not to acknowledge the extent of the generosity Mylan has given us, which is immense.”
Team Billie Jean defeated Team Elton 22-16 in front of a capacity crowd at the Royal Albert Hall in London to tie the overall series at 11-11. Tim Henman was the star of the night for Team Billie Jean, winning 10 of the 13 games he played. Henman partnered Jamie Murray to a convincing 5-0 victory in the men’s doubles against John McEnroe and Andy Roddick and later closed out victory for his team with a 5-3 win in men’s singles over Roddick.
Team Elton started off the evening with a victory in women’s doubles as Martina Hingis and Heather Watson edged Sabine Lisicki and Kim Clijsters 5-4.
Team Billie Jean’s Henman and Jamie Murray were newcomers to the WTT format, but the two quickly caught on to upstage Mylan WTT veterans John McEnroe and Andy Roddick with an impressive win in men’s doubles; Murray clinching the set with an ace.
Lisicki extended the lead for Team Billie Jean, as she defeated Watson 5-3 in women’s singles but trailing at 14-8, Team Elton fought back in mixed doubles. Former Mylan WTT teammates Hingis and McEnroe beat Clijsters and Murray 5-3 to give their team the momentum. However, Henman denied any chance of a comeback with his triumph over Roddick.
To find out more about the Mylan World TeamTennis Smash Hits here.