As you would all know by now, Roger Federer has decided to not take part in this year’s French Open. The legendary Swiss made this announcement on social media, which immediately sent his fans into a frenzy. Although Federer has been on a dream run this year, it is maybe in his best interests to skip the big event. Now, Nadal and Djokovic react to Federer’s withdrawal from the French Open.
Nadal seemed to sympathize with Federer. He also believed that the signs were already there that Federer will pull out of the Roland Garros event.
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“Everybody does what feels better for them, and [that] is normal,” Nadal said. “If he doesn’t play no one tournament before the French, is normal that he finally skip the French, no?
“Probably he had that decision before. Probably he doesn’t want to announce before. But thinking in a logical way, is strange that if you don’t play on clay in not one event and then you start on the biggest one—playing best of five—will be not very logical thing. So is normal his decision when he decided to not play in not one event before.”
Djokovic believes that Federer has earned the right to choose when and where to play.
“[I]t’s Roger, so he has the luxury to decide whatever he wants to and play whatever he wants to,” said Djokovic. “I mean, he’s been so successful throughout his career that he doesn’t need necessarily to chase the points or play all the tournaments … You know, he’s very smart in his decision-making and scheduling. He knows what he’s doing, I’m sure.
“Of course he’s aware he has [a] much better chance to win big trophies on quicker surfaces. Grass, obviously, is where he feels the most comfortable … I’m not too surprised with this decision. I mean, he had a lot of matches played at the beginning of the year, and he did amazingly well.”
Djokovic also admitted that it was a unique situation that used to happen years earlier.
It’s something that we haven’t seen, you know, from the top players in a while,” said Djokovic. “Most of, let’s say, us top players, have played throughout the whole season, more or less all the big events … If you go back, you know, 20 years or more, many players [were] skipping, for example, [the] Australian Open.