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Miami being played without Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic & Roger Federer suggests there is a problem on the circuit: Benoit Paire

Benoit Paire
Benoit Paire
Rudra Biswas
Modified 21 Mar 2021

Benoit Paire recently took to Twitter to talk about Rafael Nadal and other top players pulling out of the upcoming Miami Masters. Paire used the high-profile withdrawals as another opportunity to air his grievances about playing tennis in the bubble life.

The Frenchman believes there is a problem with the tour if the likes of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer do not find Miami - the first Masters 1000 event of 2021 - rewarding enough.

"I say maybe bullshit under the influence of impulsiveness," Benoit Paire wrote on his social media. "But when I see that the Miami Masters 1000 will be played without Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Dominic, Gaël and Stan, there is a problem at the moment on the circuit."

Last week, Benoit Paire had claimed that he was not fond of playing matches in empty stadiums with strict COVID-19 guidelines. The 31-year-old has repeatedly made his apprehensions clear about the pandemic-affected tour, and has even been accused of failing to put enough effort into his matches.

In a recent conversation with L'Equipe, Paire went as far as acknowledging that the accusations were true. The Frenchman claimed that a first-round loss at a tournament is 'better' than putting in a lot of effort to win a couple of matches, given the small difference in prize money from one round to the next.

"I lost in the first round, it's better, I will be able to get out of the bubble fairly quickly and enjoy a few days before Miami," Paire had told L'Equipe. "Tennis is not my priority right now. Getting out of the bubble is the only goal I have at the moment."

"With his words, he does not do any good to tennis" - Rafael Nadal's uncle on Benoit Paire's recent comments

Rafael Nadal and uncle Toni
Rafael Nadal and uncle Toni

Toni Nadal, the uncle and former coach of Rafael Nadal, also weighed in on the issue while speaking with a Spanish website. Toni seemed unhappy with Paire's recent tweet, and claimed that the Frenchman was not giving any constructive solutions for the problem.

"With his words he does not do any good to tennis and him either," Rafael Nadal's former coach claimed.

Toni also opined that Paire's comments suggest the Frenchman is not very keen to helping the pro tour in these dire times.

"He should have not said that," Toni said. "It shows how small his commitment is on the tour."

Rafael Nadal announced his withdrawal from the Miami Masters earlier this week, explaining that he needs a little more time to recover from his back injury. The Spaniard intends to economize on his schedule given his age, and will take some rest before getting his preparations for the European clay swing underway.

Published 21 Mar 2021, 00:51 IST
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