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SBD/November 5, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies
Federer Echoes Murray's Sentiments, Calls For Increased Drug Testing In Tennis
Published November 5, 2012
LED BY FED: USA TODAY's Douglas Robson wrote after "leading the ATP Tour Players Council as president the last three years, Federer has become a savvy student of the laws of political governance." Much of Federer's "behind-the-scenes work this year has focused on persuading the four majors to share a larger piece of the revenue pie with players." He also has "lobbied that a larger percentage of prize money go to earlier rounds to rectify a growing income distribution gap." That work has "increasingly fallen on his shoulders" as both Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, once Player Council members, "left their leadership positions." At the Masters event last month in Shanghai, Federer arrived on a Friday and "discussed strategy" with ATP player and board reps "till about 1 a.m." He practiced the next morning, "spent about 7 hours in meetings with various representatives of the Grand Slams and still attended the player party Saturday night." On Sunday evening, he "hosted three hours of meetings in his hotel room with the Player Council, ATP executive staff and U.S. Open executives -- all before he struck a match ball" (USATODAY.com, 11/4).
NEED TO LET UP? Former tennis player Pat Cash in a special to the LONDON TIMES writes players are feeling fatigued as the "tennis season has extended into an 11th successive month of competition." At the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, a "small matter of 262,000 paying customers and millions of television viewers will expect the eight men who contest this week's big event, worth a potential [US$1.75M] to the winner, to be at their peak." Decisions made by the ATP "are contributing heavily to the fatigue felt by these players." Cash: "I'm not the first and won't be the last to say these players are expected to play too many tournaments." The decision to shorten the tour "is a good one." But "continuing to make playing surfaces slow, therefore extending most rallies and in turn causing the matches to last way longer, is taking a heavy toll and is the main cause of weariness" (LONDON TIMES, 11/4).