Roger Federer: ‘Novak Djokovic was unlucky at the US Open – everyone knows that’

Roger Federer says ‘everyone knows Novak Djokovic was unlucky’ to be disqualified at the US Open last year.

Federer was watching at home when Djokovic was ejected from the tournament after accidentally hitting a line-judge with a spare ball.

Djokovic received strong and generally unfair media scrutiny over the incident, as he did for his organisation of the Adria Tour at the height of the pandemic (despite breaking no local health regulations).

Federer, though, believes the criticism for both was unwarranted.

“At the US Open he was just unlucky [when he was disqualified],” Federer said. “Everyone knows that.

“Of course you have to control yourself. But that can happen to almost anyone.

“Did he mean well with the Adriatic Tour? Was it too early for that? Yes, probably.”

Djokovic also attracted criticism for setting up the Professional Tennis Players’ Association, a move that Federer has not supported.

Despite that, he says it is important that all opinions are heard and respected.

“I haven’t seen Novak in a long time. He does his best for the players.

“It just didn’t fit when he was president of the players’ association (ATP Players Council) and founded the new organization at the same time.

“You don’t always have to be of the same opinion. But it is important that you exchange ideas together.

“The negative background noises are of course not ideal for tennis. In the meantime everything has calmed down a bit.

“There is talk of results and records again. That’s a good thing.

“We will see, what’s going on with the players’ association, the PTPA and the ATP. I’m not here in Doha to do politics. My focus is on my comeback.”

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