By James Crook

bradrewettMay 3 - Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) executive chairman and President Brad Drewett died today at his home in Sydney at the age of 54.

Drewett was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in January and announced that he would step down from his roles with the men's world tennis governing body when they had found a replacement.

"The ATP is deeply saddened to announce that Brad Drewett passed away at his home in Sydney, Australia, earlier today," said an ATP statement.

"Brad, who served as ATP Executive Chairman and President since January 2012, had been suffering from Motor Neurone Disease.

"Our thoughts are with Brad's family on this extremely sad day for them, the ATP and the entire international tennis community.

"He will be sorely missed by all."

86261257ATP chief Brad Drewett has died from motor-neurone disease at the age of 54

The Australian reached the quarter-final of the Australian Open as a player at the age of 17 in 1976 and retired in 1990 before taking various roles within the ATP since being elected as an ATP Player Board Representative in 1993.

Players such as eleven-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal and Olympic silver medallist Mardy Fish have paid tribute to Drewett on Twitter.

"A very sad for the World of Sports and tennis in particular." said Nadal.

"Our president Brad has passed away.

"Rest in peace."

"Very sad to hear of the passing of our ATP CEO Brad Drewett." said Fish

"Prayers to his family.

"Very very sad day for our great sport."

Motor neurone disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig's disease, is a neurological disorder which weakens muscles and goes on to affect movement, speech and breathing.

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