Top tennis players join Novak Djokovic in the PTPA breakaway movement

Novak Djokovic, pictured here alongside Ons Jabeur and Paula Badosa on the tennis court.

Ons Jabeur and Paula Badosa have joined Novak Djokovic’s separate tennis authority, the PTPA. Photograph: Getty

An eight-man squad together with superstars Ons Jabeur, Paula Badosa and Hubert Hurkacz have joined Novak Djokovic to hitch the squad. Skilled Tennis Gamers Affiliation (PTPA) govt committee. Djokovic got here up with the thought for the PTPA in 2020 and resigned from the ATP Gamers Council to type a players-only affiliation – separate from tennis’ present governing our bodies.

Together with Canadian participant Vasek Pospisil, Djokovic has formed the gamers’ breakaway physique in an effort to vary the world tennis system and advocate for higher rights for all gamers from high to backside. Djokovic and Pospisil mentioned the PTPA goals to raised defend the pursuits of all gamers It acquired stiff opposition in time.

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On Wednesday, the PTPA introduced {that a} group of eight gamers had fashioned the primary govt committee of the PTPA. Djokovic and Pospisil had been joined by Jabeur, Badusa, Hurkacz, John Isner, Bethany Mattek-Sands and Zeng Saisay.

It is a crucial step for the maverick physique after the likes of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have spoken out in opposition to ‘dividing’ the tennis world in the course of the Covid-19 pandemic. Jabeur is ranked No. 2 on this planet for girls and completed runner-up at Wimbledon and the US Open final 12 months.

Hurkacz is ranked 10 on this planet for males and reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon in 2021, whereas Badosa is ranked 13 on this planet and is a quarter-finalist within the French Open. Isner was beforehand ranked as excessive because the world quantity 8, whereas Matic-Sands received 9 Grand Slam titles – 5 in ladies’s and 4 in blended.

“This group was based on the premise that each participant have to be revered, protected and their rights assured, and the PTPA Rules will probably be our compass to make sure we adhere to those requirements,” Pospisil mentioned in a press release. Yahoo Sport Australia. “PTPA will solely thrive by way of the collective voice, energy and solidarity of gamers. We’re prepared to satisfy each future challenges and alternatives to advance the rights of all gamers.

“We’re all unequivocally dedicated to representing each participant throughout this extremely essential time within the sport of tennis,” mentioned Mattek-Sands. “The sports activities leisure setting is consistently evolving, and I’ve a specific deal with supporting and uplifting ladies by way of the intense pursuit of and inventive alternatives with a female-centred method.” .

“That is additionally a robust focus for PTPA, represented by our organizing ideas and for me personally. I am actually enthusiastic about making an affect and pioneering change.”

Hubert Hurkacz and Novak Djokovic, pictured here at the ATP Finals in 2021.

Hubert Hurkacz and Novak Djokovic on the ATP Finals in 2021 (Photograph by Valerio Benicino/Getty Photographs for ATP)

PTPA Government Director Ahmed Nassar mentioned: “We’re grateful to have such an unimaginable and various group of men and women serving on our first Gamers Government Committee. These people symbolize a few of the strongest and most passionate voices in skilled tennis, and they’ll have a profound affect on our efforts at PTPA to serve All gamers.”

The PTPA additionally unveiled an inventory of 5 guiding ideas “designed to guard, respect and assure the elemental rights of gamers”. They embrace:

  • Collective motion and advocacy on behalf of tennis gamers worldwide

  • Gamers get a justifiable share of the tennis enterprise and phrases of participation

  • Strictly enhance and defend the rights of tennis gamers

  • Defend the welfare of tennis gamers and defend gamers from abuse

  • Defending and contributing to one of the best imaginative and prescient and construction of tennis globally

PTPA acquired sturdy opposition from ATP

In 2021, the ATP issued a strongly worded assertion after the PTPA got here to mild. She mentioned: “Defending and selling the pursuits of gamers has been a basic precept of the ATP since its basis as a gamers’ affiliation in 1972.

In 1990, this was additional bolstered by the formation of the ATP Tour, an equal partnership between gamers and tournaments. In doing so, gamers achieved one thing distinctive within the sport: an equal voice in all selections affecting the tour.

Quite the opposite, making a separate entity supplies a transparent overlap, divides gamers and additional fragments tennis. Fragmentation has been constantly recognized as the best menace to tennis’ progress potential by main specialists inside and outdoors the game, one thing the ATP is presently working to deal with. “.

Tennis legend Martina Navratilova has additionally criticized the PTPA Beforehand, saying: “He (Novak Djokovic) thinks he is doing the precise factor. You are attempting to divide us extra after we ought to be attempting to get the sport collectively and attempting to determine methods to play tournaments with out individuals getting sick and dying from Covid. Let’s stick with this drawback as a substitute of making one.” We do not want it.”

Djokovic lately mentioned that the PTPA ought to exist “as a result of gamers do not have one hundred pc illustration within the tennis world. With the federation they do. Hopefully extra gamers will present willingness to know what the PTPA can do for them.”

“It is a course of that is going to take longer simply because we do not get credibility from different governing our bodies, so it may take longer, however we will be there, and it is one thing that we hope will proceed for a lot of many years to come back.”

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