Rafael Nadal calls for a reduction in the number of hard court tournaments to save top players from injuries and burnout.
Despite having just claimed his first grand slam title on hard court, the world number one said there were too many tournaments played on this surface.
“Hard court surface is tougher than grass or clay for the body, and all the time we are playing more on this surface,” the Spaniard told reporters on Monday after the Australian Open 2009.
“In my humble opinion, we have to change that a bit more.”
More than half the season is played on hard court, including indoor carpet, while a month is played on grass and the rest on clay.
Nadal has made no secret of his preference for clay after winning the French Open four times and had previously been hesitant to criticize hard courts because of his failure to win a grand slam title on them.
“I can say that now because I’ve won a grand slam on hard court,” he said, referring to his five-set victory over Roger Federer in Sunday’s Australian Open final.”
“Before, if I said that, a lot of people would think he just wants to change because he’s a clay player. But, believe me, I don’t think anything about if I am a clay court player or not. When I say this, I am thinking about the best for the players and for the future.”
The funny thing is that many complaints have already been addressed to the ATP CEOs before, but rarely has been made any progress or any change in the ATP tournament calendar. Let’s see if it’s going to work this time…