Chengdu is regarded by the rest of China as a city that knows how to enjoy itself – from the culinary delicacies of the region, usually with extra chillies, to visiting the nearby mountains and making the most of a temperate climate and some cooler air.

Often dismissed as a ‘small’ city by the likes of Beijing and Shanghai – these things are of course relative, there are 12 million inhabitants – Chengdu’s laid-back and relaxed atmosphere even sees its people occasionally branded ‘lazy’, in dare we say it a lazy way, by other parts of China.

But that description did not fit the hive of activity around the Sichuan Tennis Center in the build-up, with the event again only confirmed at relatively short notice. The promoters and armies of workers and dedicated volunteers again pulled out all the stops to have the facility ready for the off on opening Sunday.