Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and different members of the ATP Participant Council spoke out Saturday towards a plan put forth by top-ranked Novak Djokovic and Vasek Pospisil to start out a males’s-only union of kinds for tennis — bringing the game’s politics into the highlight simply earlier than the U.S. Open.
Additionally towards the proposal: the ATP males’s tour and the game’s different governing our bodies, together with the WTA girls’s tour and the 4 Grand Slam tournaments. They issued a joint assertion Saturday saying: “It’s a time for even higher collaboration, not division.”
After a gathering Saturday night time, Pospisil tweeted out an image displaying a bunch of male gamers — carrying masks due to the pandemic — standing on a U.S. Open courtroom and wrote that “we’re excited to announce the start of the Skilled Tennis Gamers Affiliation (PTPA).”
The affiliation — Djokovic stated it was not a union, though the excellence wasn’t totally clear — “didn’t emerge to be combative, to disrupt, or to trigger any points inside or exterior the tennis tour. Merely to unify the gamers, have our voices heard & have an effect on choices being made that (have an effect on) our lives & livelihoods,” Pospisil wrote.
In an electronic mail despatched to gamers earlier within the week, Djokovic and Pospisil they might be the preliminary co-presidents of the group, which might even be led by as much as 9 trustees — all gamers.
In contrast to athletes in main North American workforce sports activities, tennis gamers are usually not represented by a union that collectively bargains with possession about pay and different issues. Every tennis participant is an impartial contractor.
“We aren’t calling for boycotts. We aren’t forming parallel excursions,” Djokovic stated after profitable the Western & Southern Open on Saturday, two days earlier than play begins on the U.S. Open.
“After all I might like to have Roger and Rafa on board. After all, I might like to have all of the gamers on board. However I perceive,” Djokovic stated. “I really perceive that a few of them have totally different opinions and so they don’t assume the time is true.”
Djokovic has been the president, and Pospisil a member, of the ATP Participant Council however each are resigning, as is John Isner.
Andy Murray stated Saturday he desires to present the present ATP management — former participant Andrea Gaudenzi took over as CEO in January — extra time to work. Murray additionally doesn’t like that the PTPA can be for male gamers solely; there was speak earlier this 12 months about the potential for merging the ATP and WTA.
Having a bunch representing women and men would ship “a way more highly effective message,” Murray stated.
Federer and Nadal joined participant council representatives Kevin Anderson, Jurgen Melzer, Sam Querrey and Bruno Soares in sending a word to gamers elevating questions in regards to the proposal and saying they’re towards it.
“The world resides a tough and sophisticated scenario. I personally imagine these are occasions to be calm and work all of us collectively in the identical route. It’s time for unity, not for separation,” Nadal tweeted. “These are moments the place huge issues will be achieved so long as the world of tennis is united. All of us, gamers, tournaments and governing our bodies must work collectively. We’ve a much bigger drawback and separation and disunion is unquestionably not the answer.”
Federer quote-tweeted his on-court rival to say he agrees and added: “These are unsure and difficult occasions, however I imagine it’s crucial for us to face united as gamers, and as a sport, to pave one of the simplest ways ahead.”
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