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Federer And Djokovic Considered An Exhibition Match At Wimbledon

Siddharth Nair
|Wed Jul 05 2017

In what was a highly anticipated day at Wimbledon, the packed crowd was left a little short changed as two marque matches ended quite abruptly due to injury.

The fans had come to see Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in action, but were disappointed to see both matches end mid way. Djokovic was leading 6-2, 2-0 when Martin Klizan had to retire complaining of a sore knee.

The King of Wimbledon, Roger Federer barely played for 43 minutes before his opponent Alexandr Dolgopolov had to quit due to an ankle injury. The crowd was clearly upset and made their feelings known with boos raining from the stands at the announcement of this news.

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Since the crowd was left disappointed, both Federer and Djokovic were open to the idea of playing an exhibition match so that the crowd gets their moneys worth that day.

This is what Federer had to say about this,

“The question always is, should they have started the match at all? That, only the player can answer really, in my opinion. You hope that they would give up their spot for somebody else, even though they deserve to be in there, but fitness not allowing them.

“I don’t know how much of that has something to play with it. On the ATP level we have a different sort of situation, whereas if you can’t play, you still get your prize money twice in the year. Maybe the grand slams should adopt some of that, then maybe we would eliminate maybe half of the players.

“Some of them, maybe something really did happen. Now you’re thrown in the same basket, so that’s rough.”

Djokovic had to say this as well,

“Maybe it should be addressed. I think the new rule that the ATP has reinforced allows players who deserve already, who have made it to the grand slam main draw, to get what they deserve, but at the other hand allow someone else to play if they can. I support that kind of rule.”

“It’s really odd that Roger’s result and my result more or less was the same. We had a little joke about it in the locker room, saying we should maybe play a practice set on the Centre Court, have the crowd stay. But they had another match.”

Federer was seeing chatting with Djokovic and this is what he revealed from that conversation,

“When I walked up, the chairman said, ‘You guys should go and play for another set and a half’. I said, ‘Yeah, let me go try to find Novak.’

“I found him in the locker room. I told him, ‘Maybe we should go out and play another set’. [But] it’s not going to happen.”

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