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Discussion Starter #1
There's been a lot of discussion about the Marko Djokovic wildcard. Turns out it gets worse - Arab Malek Jaziri was to be given the WC and was told he would get it. He then got a call at 9pm Friday to say he should be ready for a qualifying match at 11am Saturday as he wouldn't be getting the WC anymore - that WC instead went to Djokovic. Disgraceful. More disgraceful on the part of the organisers as to how they handled it but also sounds like the Djokovic request came late in the day if they'd already promised Jaziri he'd get a WC.

http://www.sport360.com/opinion/malek-jaziris-disgraceful-wildcard-snub-dubai-slap-face-arab-tennis

The last minute decision to not award Arab No.1 tennis player Malek Jaziri a wild card entry into the main draw of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is both shocking and disappointing.

The way the situation was handled, however, is flat out appalling. The Tunisian is currently less than an arm’s length away from cracking the top 100 in the ATP rankings - this week he is No.104 - and a good showing in Dubai would see him become only the fourth Arab player in the history of the ATP to feature in the top 100 and the first Arab to do so in eight years.

So imagine when the Arab world’s greatest prospect in almost a decade is denied a wild card from the region’s biggest tennis event and the player invited instead is world No.867 Marko Djokovic, Novak’s younger brother - who is over 700 ranking spots below Jaziri.

And imagine how the player feels after he was first informed he will get the wild card, before he received a call at 9pm Friday night telling him that is no longer the case and he will be playing his first qualifying match on Saturday morning at 11am.


On Friday afternoon, the press were told from the tournament’s PR that Jaziri was being awarded a wild card along with Sergei Bubka Jr. (son of the legendary pole vaulter) and UAE No.1 Omar Behrouzian.

All the journalists from the Arabic newspapers quickly took to their laptops to proudly relay the news there were going to be two Arabs in the main draw this year and many of the papers yesterday morning printed that news in the UAE and in Tunisia. They didn’t know about the 9pm phone call and like Jaziri, everyone was surprised.

The men’s tournament is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year and while its success has been a source of genuine pride for the Arab region, it’s disgraceful how business and relations take a front seat to what this event should essentially be about - sport.

Giving a player a 14-hour notice about a qualifying match is unacceptable and while Jaziri has no problem having to qualify, and he already won his first-round match comfortably, there are far better ways to handle last-minute “important” wild card requests than this.

It’s quite clear where the tournament’s priorities are at and frankly, it’s plain sad. We wonder why there are no top Arab players in tennis, and then we witness situations like this, where a professional and dedicated Tunisian has managed to shoot his way through the rankings with as little support as one can get; he’s qualified for a Grand Slam and won his first-round match; he’s won a Challenger title and countless Futures and he was two points away from beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in Doha last month.

In short, he’s proved himself with every chance he’s got - but still none of that was suffice to warrant him a spot in the main draw in Dubai.
If our very own tournaments are not giving our players the necessary support, then who will?

This week, the Championships could be celebrating two things, its 20th anniversary and the rise of an Arab player into the world’s top 100. Sadly, the latter feat is not being acknowledged by the tournament officials.
 

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Too bad Malek lost to Golubev.
But money talks, nothing new here.
Shame that the best Arabic player can't get a WC into the biggest Arabic tournament, though
 

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Yeah, would be great if Jaziri beat Golubev and got the same spot in the MD to kick Marko's ass. Too bad it didn't happen :sad:
 

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Tournament director and Dubai Duty Free Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Salah Tahlak explained there are certain things the tournament has to take into consideration, which is why the younger Djokovic took precedence over the top Arab player.

“We had four wild cards, one of them wasn’t used because it’s only for top-20 players, so we had three left. So we gave the wild cards to Sergei Bubka Jr. who took it last year and did great so we gave it to him again. And then we have of course the Emirati Omar,” said Tahlak.

“Marko Djokovic is important to us because he is the brother of the No.1 player in the world. So that helps us, automatically. As a tournament we have other things to take into consideration.”

Tahlak added: “Novak only recommended that we include his brother in our tournament. We studied that request and we ultimately made the decision that serves the tournament’s best interests and therefore the interests of the players participating in it. We will never accept for anyone to interfere in our work.”





http://www.sport360.com/article/arab-no1-malek-jaziri-given-wild-card-snub-dubai-duty-free-tennis-championships
 

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Discussion Starter #7
“Marko Djokovic is important to us because he is the brother of the No.1 player in the world. So that helps us, automatically. As a tournament we have other things to take into consideration.”

Tahlak added: “Novak only recommended that we include his brother in our tournament. We studied that request and we ultimately made the decision that serves the tournament’s best interests and therefore the interests of the players participating in it. We will never accept for anyone to interfere in our work.”

http://www.sport360.com/article/arab-no1-malek-jaziri-given-wild-card-snub-dubai-duty-free-tennis-championships
Unbelievable! How the hell does a tournament which has 8 of the world's top 10, including Federer, Murray, Djokovic, Del Potro and Tsonga (!!!) need Marko Djokovic to "serve the interests of the tournament" better?! :confused: The Djokovics should apologise to Jaziri - that first round prize money and opportunity to play in front of an Arab crowd should have been Jaziri's - not Marko's.
 

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Neptomism at its most annoying. I mean, if Marko was half way decent- but 800?
 

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Yow! It gets worse! Well, let's hope the negative press from this debacle dissuades the Djokovics from trying something like this again. Gotta pity Malek but it sounds like he won't be needing WCs in the future because he's good enough for GS main draws. Argh, it's lose-lose for all parties.
 

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$urely there i$ a rea$on the director$ would pull $uch a $tunt.

"Other con$ideration$" my a$$.
 

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Tahlak added: “Novak only recommended that we include his brother in our tournament. We studied that request and we ultimately made the decision that serves the tournament’s best interests and therefore the interests of the players participating in it. We will never accept for anyone to interfere in our work.”
stupid yet arrogant people. that's why you are ruled so easily by other nations.

:facepalm: on Novak's part
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Makes you wonder which other tournaments might have had a request made on Marko's behalf but turned down the Djokovic's...
 

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this is getting embarrassing for djoko
 

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Like that Jaziri could have won a match or something :rolleyes: Better gave that WC whose name helps to sell tickets. I believe there are plenty of Nole's fans who go there to support his bro.
 

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Unbelievable! How the hell does a tournament which has 8 of the world's top 10, including Federer, Murray, Djokovic, Del Potro and Tsonga (!!!) need Marko Djokovic to "serve the interests of the tournament" better?! :confused: The Djokovics should apologise to Jaziri - that first round prize money and opportunity to play in front of an Arab crowd should have been Jaziri's - not Marko's.
If I'm not mistaken, Nadal as world #1 never played in Dubai, right? And do you think 8 of the top 10 would come there, if it were not the big $$$ involved - or do you think they went there to promote tennis purely on good will? :p
 
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