Aussie great labels Novak Djokovic-led PTPA ‘tone deaf’ and says lack of women their ‘biggest downfall’
Australian tennis legend Todd Woodbridge has slammed the timing of the Novak Djokovic-led breakaway player association for “throwing this sort of bomb out there” when everybody is struggling.
Men’s tennis was thrown into turmoil on Saturday when world No 1 Djokovic along with Canadian Vasek Pospisil and American John Isner announced that they would break away from the ATP Player Council and form the new Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA).
However, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray immediately announced that they would not support the new players association as they felt “it is time for unity, not for separation”.
Doubles great Woodbridge also believed the timing of the move was wrong.
“Crazy times, there’s no doubt about that,” he told Channel 9’s Sports Sunday.
“Let me just start by saying this is tone deaf by the group that have decided to break away. The ATP is the players’ representation, they’ve got their seat at the table; they want more, they want more control of that.
“It’s just poor judgment at this time. Everybody’s losing jobs, millions are out of work, tournaments are struggling to stay up and afloat, and the tour’s been trying for the last six months to get back.
“This is the first week back and they throw this sort of bomb out there? I’m pretty disappointed with the way that they’ve gone with that timing.”
Murray went further and said the new PTPA’s decision not to include any women was a poor move and Woodbridge echoed his sentiments.
“But there’s the biggest downfall of all and that’s … where are the women? If you’re going to do this, tennis is the one sport that’s united in the world, with equal prize money, our majors are played together,” he said.
“We are better and stronger as one and we’re not standing up to that. This group has totally missed the mark on an opportunity to bring everybody together and I think that’s going to be their downfall.”
Follow us on Twitter @T365Official.
Ashleigh Barty news: Barty carries Australian hopes as she faces Danielle Collins in Australian Open final
Barty will take on American Danielle Collins in a Melbourne showdown on Saturday.
Ashleigh Barty news: How Ben Crowe played a huge role in Barty’s mental strength
Ashleigh Barty is mentally ready for Saturday.
Roger Federer news: John McEnroe doubts Swiss icon will reach his best form again
John McEnroe believes we are unlikely to see Roger Federer’s best form again.
Follow the 2022 Australian Open with our live scores and results centre here
Catch the action from Melbourne Park.
Novak Djokovic news: Has tennis proved it is bigger than its top player?
For now, tennis is taking centre stage in glorious fashion.
2022 Australian Open women’s final info, recent form and preview: Ashleigh Barty vs Danielle Collins
This way for your 2022 Australian Open women’s final preview.
Emma Raducanu news: John McEnroe questions big decision after US Open win
McEnroe has repeated his suggestions that Emma Raducanu was ‘overwhelmed’ at Wimbledon.
Peng Shuai news: Meeting with IOC will be under strict Covid-19 measures
The International Olympic Committee all set for Peng Shuai meeting.
Danielle Collins news: ‘It feels amazing,’ says American after reaching Australian Open final
Ecstasy for Danielle Collins as she books Australian Open final spot.
Serena Williams news: John McEnroe believes tennis great can win another Grand Slam this year
John McEnroe believes Serena Williams can win No 24 this year.