Nadal Heaps More Criticism on International Tennis Federation


Spanish superstar Rafael Nadal again blasted the International Tennis Federation on Sunday, claiming they were shirking their responsibility to players by failing to lighten a packed tennis calendar.

Nadal led Spain to a 4-1 Davis Cup win over France, and a final date with Argentina, but there were tears for his U.S. Open final slayer Novak Djokovic whose injury-forced retirement saw defending champions Serbia slump 3-2 to the South Americans.

The Spaniard, who earlier in the week refused to rule out a strike over a schedule which forced him to play the Davis Cup just four days after losing the US Open final, said he regretted none of his comments.

ITF chief Francesco Ricci had hit back at Nadal's criticisms Saturday, stating that they should be directed towards the ATP who control 90 percent of the calendar.

But the world number two insisted: "The ATP have done a lot of things for players.

"They notably helped players increase their benefits and not just financially, while the international federation (ITF) are in the handy position of not wanting to change anything.

"Of course they look after the youth categories by giving them money but they make no effort concerning the calendar.

"The ATP's problem is that their good will is not enough. As they represent not only the players but also the tournaments there is a lot of inertia to change things."

Ricci had stated: "I have the deepest respect for Nadal. He is a great champion and a sporting role model, but to accuse the Davis Cup of putting players' physical well-being at stake is incomprehensible.

"Why doesn't Nadal address his complaints to the ATP which controls 90 percent of the calendar when we control just a few weeks?

"And to say that the ITF turns a deaf ear, this really doesn't hold water. We have always listened to the players. For example, I have always said that a September date for the Davis Cup wasn't fair and that we wanted to change it."

"We are always open to dialogue. I have talked to the president of the ATP who has asked me to address the ATP player council. We are in the process of finding solutions."

Comments 0