Rafael Nadal has urged the ATP and WTA to resist calls from Novak Djokovic to make the Tours more contained to cope with the coronavirus crisis.
Djokovic, backed by his Australian Open quarterfinal opponent Alexander Zverev, called for the situation to be looked at again in a bid to avoid more potential quarantines, which he believes is responsible for the spate of injuries in the tournament.
Nadal, though, speaking after his Australian Open exit against Stefanos Tsitsipas, says he believes tennis needs to keep going – out of fear it may take too long to come back again.
“He’s completely right that for our sport things are difficult because governments are changing the rules constantly,” Nadal said of Djokovic’s suggestion.
“So it’s difficult to make predictions about how the things are going to happen.
“But there is a very clear thing. There are two options. Stop the tour or keep going.
“My personal feeling is it’s tough for the players, of course, to have to do bubbles in every single event, flying just plus two; a lot of players have family and they cannot have the family with them, so that makes our tour probably tougher than ever, no?
“But on the other hand, if we stop the tour, why and how and when will we be able to come back? And a lot of jobs are going to suffer a lot.
“I mean, not only players. A lot of people are living from our sport, no? If we stop our sport again, a lot of people are going to suffer.
“We need to think a little bit bigger. And of course we need to protect players.
“Probably we need to find a way to protect the players with the rankings, to not force them to keep playing, because the situation is very tough for a lot of players, depending on the countries.
“But that’s it. We need to find solutions and we need to adapt to these very tough times that we are facing. Not only us, the world.
“We are here to find solutions. I mean, and we need to be grateful to life that we can keep doing what we are doing.”
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