A rule that was introduced by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Tour at the beginning of 2017- which is however excluded in the Grand Slams- gives players the chance to retire before the 1st round and still get their prize money.
Roger Federer is through to the 2nd Round after Alexandr Dolgopolov retired with an ankle injury. Alexandr was on the losing side with 6-3, 3-0 and retired after 43 minutes of play. Martin Klizan also gave Novak Djokovic a 2nd Round entry when he also sustained a calf injury in 40 minutes of play after trailing behind with 6-2,2-0.
WATCH: Roger Federer vs Alexandr Dolgopolov (Ist Round) at Wimbledon
Though many people have criticized the players who retire, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic both supports the rule as reported by BBC Sports. “I hope it doesn’t happen but I believe that more players clearly would finish their matches. A player should not go on court if he knows he should not finish the question is, did they truly believe they were going to finish” Federer said at the post match press conference.
“If they did, I think it’s okay that they walk on court. Otherwise, I feel they should give up the spot. The ATP has adjusted it’s rule. Maybe the Slams should have a look at what they could do for the players to make it just a little bit easier [for the players who retire] Federer added.
WATCH: Novak Djokovic vs Martin Klizan (1st Round) at Wimbledon
Novak Djokovic also supported the decision at the press conference after the match.”Maybe it should be addressed. I think the new rule that the ATP has reinforced allows players who have made it to the Grand Slam main draw to get what they deserve, but on the other hand, allow someone else to play if they can.
“I support that kind of rule.If you walk out on the center court there is a responsibility. I’m sure they tried their best but it is what it is. ” he added.