Novak Djokovic has announced that he will co-found the new player’s association, which is due to begin on September 1. The Serbian legend – who recently split from longtime girlfriend Jelena Ristic – insists that the establishment of the new organisation will help to strengthen the position of tennis players at the top end of the game. The new association will be based out of the Players’ Centre at Wimbledon. In a statement, Djokovic said: “A key principle of our association will be a roadmap to benefit our sport, of which an important component will be our engagement with key stakeholders in order to build a united player power.” The message will inevitably be seen as a direct response to the tactics of the ATP.
Nadal, in particular, has strongly criticized the ATP and their international headquarters in Miami over their lack of support for players battling injuries. At his media conference after his defeat by Karen Khachanov at Wimbledon earlier this month, he gave a blunt assessment of the ATP, telling reporters: “At the moment if you ask every tennis player in the world: do you think the ATP has been a good player? No. If you asked every player from the ATP and they were honest about it, they would say the same.”