Sport : Tennis

ATP hits out at Monday move

17th December 2012, 02:31pm

Next year' US Open men's singles final will take place on a Monday

Next year' US Open men's singles final will take place on a Monday

The ATP has criticised the decision to move the US Open men's singles to a Monday.

Officials of the Flushing Meadows tournament announced last week that the 2013 final would be played on a Monday evening, thus creating a rest day between the Saturday semi-finals and the title match.

However, in a strongly-worded statement issued on Monday, the ATP - the body which runs the men's tour but not the Grand Slams - hit out at the move saying it wanted to see the Saturday semi-finals, good for TV viewing figures, scrapped.

The statement read: "By modifying the schedule to allow a rest day between the semi-finals and the final, the US Open has recognised the incredible physical demands of men's tennis.

"However, the ATP and its players have made it clear to the US Open that we do not support a Monday final. We strongly believe the US Open should keep a similar schedule to the other Grand Slams, with the men's semi-finals completed by Friday and the final on Sunday.

"It is unfortunate the US Open response did not reflect our views on this issue and the ATP and its players will continue to pursue this matter in its discussions with the USTA."

One of the ATP's star players, reigning US Open champion Andy Murray, last week backed the decision to include a rest day between the last two rounds but notably did not mention the switch to a Monday.

The schedule for the 2014 tournament is still to be decided with officials due to decide on that once they have seen how next year's tournament unfolds.

The ATP is also not completely happy with prize money increases at the event and still want a bigger slice of tournament revenues.

It was also announced last week that an extra US$4million would be in the prize fund in 2013, a move which means the cash pool for players will have increased by 34 per cent over a two-year period.

The statement continued: "The prize money increase announced by the US Open for 2013 is appreciated and, together with the 2012 increase, represents the largest increase by the US Open since the ATP Tour began in 1990.

"However, over the last nine months the ATP and its players have asked that the US Open fully recognise the fundamental role of the players in driving US Open revenues, which are the largest in our sport.

"The ATP therefore remains committed to continuing discussions on this issue, with the objective of ensuring that the players' share of the revenues at the US Open truly reflects the value that they generate for the event."

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