Djokovic year-end proposal won’t sit well with Federer
Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic may not see eye to eye over “Super Cup” possibility
Novak Djokovic could well be heading into a corporate clash of wills with rival Roger Federer after the Serb who heads the ATP Players Council proposed combining the new-look Davis Cup Finals and January’s ATP Cup.
With this week’s spluttering Davis event in Madrid struggling to gain full traction and Djokovic in the thick of the fight for Serbia at the 18-nation tournament, the world No. 2 picked the moment to voice his radical plan.
The ATP will be staging its first edition of the 24-team Cup across three Australian cities in January prior to the start of the Australian Open; it came to fruition only after the International Tennis Federation sold management rights to the 119-year-old Davis Cup to an untried Spanish group headed by a footballer.
With two major competitions within six weeks of each other, criticism has been flying across the game from one side or another.
But Djokovic’s proposed post-US Open September date for the combined cup puts him in the line of fire for Federer’s successful Laver Cup, also staged during the month.
“Scheduling was always an issue for both the ATP Cup and Davis Cup. An idea – that could happen – was to merge the two. I think it’s still open for the future,” Djokovic said in Madrid..
“Looking long-term, I don’t think that the two events can co-exist six weeks apart. It’s just a bit too congested.
“The most ideal time of the year is after the US Open, probably end of September. That would be the best time to have this super cup, whatever, one cup hopefully in the future.
He added: “Of course, the ITF and ATP are two different organisations. So it’s very complex. It’s not easy to make any change in our sport.
“But, when the change is made, at least you make that first step. Of course you can always point out the negatives but there are positives as well.
That’s my opinion. I don’t know whether that’s realistic or not, whether that’s possible.”
Djokovic should know better than most that animosity flows deep between the various competing bodies in the sport. And setting up a showdown with Federer’s powerful Team8 group cannot be good for anyone.
The Laver Cup, initiated and run by Federer’s management group, has staged three wildly successful editions of the Europe v World Laver Cup in Prague,Chicago and Geneva, with the 2020 edition set for Boston.
Written by Bill Scott for Grandslamtennis.online. To read more visit grandslamtennis.online