‘A 19-hour flight for one tournament…’ – David Goffin defends Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem Miami decision

David Goffin says the Miami Open is ‘complicated’ this year and he understands Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem deciding to give it a miss.

Miami is usually part of the prestigious March ‘Sunshine Double’ along with Indian Wells, but the latter decided to cancel this year due to coronavirus concerns.

That has left Miami a lone major tournament in America at a time when many players have been on the other side of the world for Doha and Dubai.

The problem is compounded by its proximality to the European clay court season, which will involve a lot more travel afterwards followed by a change of surface.

Both Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem have cited the impending clay season as reasons for their Miami withdrawals, and Goffin understands their thinking.

“Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem are already thinking about clay, which is their most significant goal of the year,” he said.

“I understand their decision. A 19-hour flight for just one tournament? It’s complicated.

“But I will play in Miami, it’s still the Masters 1000, and you have to be there.

Goffin will head to Florida from Dubai, where his tournament was abruptly ended by a resurgent Kei Nishikori.

Reflecting on the match, Goffin said he probably shouldn’t have played.

“I know now why I didn’t come to Dubai in the past because it’s very tough,” he said.

“The conditions are so fast, and it’s not easy for my game, especially when you play against Kei.”

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