Tennis superstar, Rafael Nadal, has warned that the British 50 per cent tax rate could see London lose its hosting of the showcase end-of-season ATP World Tour Finals.
The men's world number one said that the 50 percent tax on players' appearance fees, winnings and a proportion of their worldwide endorsement earnings was huge drawback for players. He indicated that the growing discontent among the top players could see the event relocated to a more favourable tax jurisdiction from London's O2 Arena when the five-year contract comes up for renewal in 2013.
"What I believe in my heart, is that London is a fantastic event. There's a full crowd at every match, a fantastic stadium," he said. "But London is not the only city in the world."
The World Tour Finals sees the top eight players in the world descend on the O2 for a final elite event every season, to duke it out for the ultimate annual victory.
Nadal said players are having to balance out taking part in events in the UK with other ones abroad. He has confirmed he will not be playing in the annual Wimbledon warm-up event, at Queen's, in favour of one in Germany.
"I play for one week, and they take out money from my sponsors. That's a lot," he said "I'm going to play at Wimbledon. I'm going to play in the World Tour Finals. So that is a lot of weeks, a lot of tax. It is becoming more and more complicated to play in the UK at the moment."