http://is.gd/VbHmpCTired ... don't chase more money!
Amritraj critical of Nadal's complaint of an overcrowded tennis schedule
SINGAPORE - Former Indian tennis great Vijay Amritraj (picture) believes the "spat" between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal which has threatened to overshadow the Australian Open is nothing more than a storm in a teacup.
On Sunday, Nadal, who until then seemed to get along great with the Swiss star, hit out at Federer for not doing more on issues affecting the sport, including scheduling, which has led to talk of a players' strike.
Vijay feels Spain's world No 2, a 10-time major winner, and the rest of the complainants, are off the mark.
"The players have a choice to play. It's not mandatory," said Vijay, now a commentator with ESPN Star Sports. "The only thing mandatory for the players on the ATP Tour is to play the Grand Slams and the ATP 1000 series events. The Davis Cup is optional. So maybe we're talking 15, 16 weeks, tops 20 weeks. Twenty weeks out of the 52 is not a long schedule.
"If you choose to play other tournaments and want to make more money, that's your choice. Don't come back and say the tournament schedule is too long."
The 58-year-old believes there is no justification for a players' strike.
"Everyone's a grown-up at the table, at least I think so. When you're debating issues of great importance to the tournaments, slams and players, you have to sit down like adults, discuss it and lay it out," he said.
Vijay, who beat Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors at his peak in the 1970s and early 80s, stressed that 16-time major champion Federer and Nadal, as president and vice-president of the ATP Players' Council, have to realise no one player is bigger than the sport itself.
"It's very important for them to understand, which I'm sure they do, that the growth of the game is much more important than their own careers," he said.
"Federers and Nadals will come and go, as did Pete (Sampras) and Andre (Agassi), and John (McEnroe) and Jimmy (Connors) before them, but the game has to continue to grow and provide new challenges and opportunities for kids and players around the world.
"So when you accept and get elected to these positions, it's important you keep that in the foremost of your mind before you go out and think of yourself."
Now a big fan of Rafa and a big hater of Roger(Who used to say in almost every Roger's pre-match discussion that any player has a great opportunity to beat Roger in their match) is talking against Rafa. :lol: