‘I empathize with him wholeheartedly’ – Novak Djokovic backs Vasek Pospisil in ATP row

Novak Djokovic has backed Vasek Pospisil ‘wholeheartedly’ after political frustrations got the better of him in Miami.

Pospisil and Djokovic are the leaders of the PTPA, an independent players union formed last year due to many feeling the ATP Players Council was failing to adequately represent them.

During his first round match in Miami against Mackenzie McDonald, Pospisil told the chair umpire: “An hour and a half the chair of the ATP f***ing screaming at me in a player meeting for trying to unite the players.

“For an an hour and a half… The leader of the ATP… F***ing a**hole.”

It gave an interesting insight into how relations are behind the scenes between the ATP and PTPA, and Djokovic has come out to publicly support the Canadian.

“Concerning matters at hand, I am not in Miami,” Djokovic tweeted.
“However, Vasek Pospisil is my good friend, and I empathize with him wholeheartedly.

“Players on tour would agree that he is an individual of the highest integrity who cares about the wellbeing of his fellow competitors.

“I am hopeful players recognize the importance of standing together.”

After the match Pospisil apologised for his actions, but tellingly not the frustrations behind them.

“I want to sincerely apologize for my behaviour on the court in Miami earlier today,” he said.

“I disrespected the game I love and for that I am truly sorry.

“By way of explanation, I felt deeply unnerved during a meeting between players and ATP executives last night, and I underestimated the toll those emotions took on me until I stepped onto the court today.

“Again, I am sorry for my on-court behaviour and the language I used.”

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