ASB Tennis Classic director Karl Budge believes Serena Williams' success at the Australian Open could encourage her to return to New Zealand.
Williams' 'warm up' visit to New Zealand this year didn't turn out quite as anyone could have expected, either on or off the court, with a shock second round loss to the world No73, and then some unfortunate comments from the 22-time grand slam winner.
But Budge said he sat down with Williams and her team in Australia and still maintains a strong relationship.
"There's not much more that needs to be said, but as I said at the time, it was all due to some comments she made after losing a match she shouldn't lose, and you're always going to get something in a scenario like that," Budge told Tony Veitch on Newstalk ZB.
"It was unfortunate, but we've had a good chat and talked about what future years could look like and we have a really good relationship with both her agent and her coach, and we'll keep those conversations going."
But will she come back for redemption to 'repay' the tournament?
"We had that conversation and it's something that we will work on, and I think her winning the Australian Open will help that. I put up a pretty cheeky post to her on Instagram yesterday, saying how the preparation in Auckland had her match ready."