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 alter the world tennis system and advocate for higher rights for all gamers from prime to backside. Djokovic and Pospisil mentioned the PTPA goals to raised defend the pursuits of all gamers It obtained stiff opposition in time.

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On Wednesday, the PTPA introduced {that a} group of eight gamers had shaped the primary govt committee of the PTPA. Djokovic and Pospisil have 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 through the Covid-19 pandemic. Jabeur is ranked No. 2 on the planet for ladies and completed runner-up at Wimbledon and the US Open final 12 months.

Hurkacz is ranked 10 on the planet for males and reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon in 2021, whereas Badosa is ranked 13 on the 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 girls’s and 4 in combined.

“This group was based on the premise that each participant should be revered, protected and their rights assured, and the PTPA Ideas 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 means of the collective voice, energy and solidarity of gamers. We’re prepared to fulfill each future challenges and alternatives to advance the rights of all gamers.

“We’re all unequivocally dedicated to representing each participant throughout this extremely necessary time within the sport of tennis,” mentioned Mattek-Sands. “The sports activities leisure surroundings is continually evolving, and I’ve a specific deal with supporting and uplifting girls by means of the intense pursuit of and artistic 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 influence 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 Pictures for ATP)

PTPA Government Director Ahmed Nassar mentioned: “We’re grateful to have such an unimaginable and numerous group of men and women serving on our first Gamers Government Committee. These people signify a few of the strongest and most passionate voices in skilled tennis, and they’ll have a profound influence 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 basic rights of gamers”. They embody:

  • 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 the perfect imaginative and prescient and construction of tennis globally

PTPA obtained robust opposition from ATP

In 2021, the ATP issued a strongly worded assertion after the PTPA got here to gentle. 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 strengthened 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 offers a transparent overlap, divides gamers and additional fragments tennis. Fragmentation has been constantly recognized as the best risk to tennis’ development potential by main consultants inside and outdoors the game, one thing the ATP is at the moment working to deal with. “.

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

Djokovic not too long ago mentioned that the PTPA ought to exist “as a result of gamers haven’t got 100% illustration within the tennis world. With the federation they do. Hopefully extra gamers will present willingness to grasp 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’ll take longer, however we’ll be there, and it is one thing that we hope will proceed for a lot of a long time to come back.”

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