Djokovic meets ATP chief Gaudenzi, says players body moving ahead

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Novak Djokovic had a chat with ATP chief Andrea Gaudenzi ahead of the Italian Open in Rome regarding his breakaway players body, the world number one said, reiterating that the new association could be a “positive addition” to the men’s Tour.

In a stunning move Djokovic stepped down as head of the ATP player council last month along with members Vasek Pospisil, John Isner and Sam Querrey and announced the formation of the Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA).

“I did meet Andrea. We had a player meeting and he did a presentation for us. It was about two days ago,” the Serb told reporters after moving into the third round in Rome with a win over Italian wildcard Salvatore Caruso.

“We stayed for about two and a half hours and I stayed all the way through. I had a chat with him as well privately. We don’t have any issues.

“We always had a very transparent and open relationship, Andrea and myself. We have known each other for many years. I respect him a lot.”

Djokovic has described the PTPA, which he said has already attracted the support of more than 200 players, as a platform for the views of the athletes that can co-exist with the ATP.

Tennis governing bodies have, however, opposed the move and called for unity now that the sport has resumed after a lengthy shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We never said we want to boycott or separate ourselves from the ATP or anything like that. We want to work together in this ecosystem with ATP and everyone else,” Djokovic said.

“The Players Association is going forward, it’s very important for us to have a 100% players representation.”

Djokovic’s move has met opposition from Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal while acting player council president Kevin Anderson failed to see how the PTPA could co-exist with the ATP under the current structure.

Djokovic said he had exchanged greetings with Nadal in Rome but was yet to chat with the Spaniard about the PTPA.

“That’s not gonna happen during the tournament for sure,” Djokovic said. “Maybe there will be time for that next week before Roland Garros when we don’t have matches for maybe three-four days and maybe that will be a chance to do it.”

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Arushi Sana
Arushi Sana is the Co-Founder of Santerra Living, a bio-pellet factory that makes a renewable form of eco-coal and Co-Founder of NYK Daily, a global news platform. She was awarded the Times Power Women of the Year 2022, Times Digital Entrepreneur of the Year 2023, Silicon India's Top 10 Women Owned Startups of Hyderabad 2023 and IHW Council Climate Health Influencer 2024. Arushi is also a speaker for Sustainability and Entrepreneurship at various forms like the World Bank, UN International Solar Alliance and Universities, and was also invited to the UN COP28 UAE Climate Conference. She is a Sustainability Consultant for organisations looking to reduce their carbon footprint and also works with brands on social media to help them carve a presence in that niche. She holds a Degree in Computer Science Engineering from VIT University and a Diploma in Marketing Analytics from IIM Nagpur. She has previously worked in Ernst & Young and Deloitte as a Forensic Data Analyst. Arushi is a writer, political researcher, a social worker, a farmer and a singer with an interest in languages. Travel and nature are the biggest spiritual getaways for her, and she aims to develop a global community of knowledge and journalism par excellence through this News Platform.

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