May 27, 2014
There wasn't any shocking moment in the first round of the French Open when it opened on Sunday, except for one: world number one and reigning champion Rafael Nadal has to kick off his campaign in the secondary Suzanne Lenglen court instead of the Philippe Chatrier court. Nobody saw that coming. To put it simply, it is easier to predict the favoured Wimbledon 2014 odds than the French Open organiser's snub.
The organisers decision to host Novak Djokovic versus Joao Sousa and Stanislas Wawrinka versus Guillermo Garcia-Lopez instead of the eight time champion versus Robby Ginepri, has prompted a furious reaction from fans on social media and amongst tennis players.
"That's really bizarre," American John Isner, ATP world ranking number 11 told AFP.
"I mean, how many times does the guy have to win the tournament to be able to have his first match on Chatrier?"
“It doesn’t go week by week. I don’t know who’s talking all the time, but Rafa is the favourite, and then Novak, and then the rest, you know. It’s very clear,” Roger Federer insisted.
Personally, the organiser made a huge mistake by making such a move. Not that it's disrespectful to Nadal but also to the fans who have bought tickets to watch him play on Philippe Chatrier. But I'm quite sure that if Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu made it to the second round to play against Nadal, they will definitely get to play on that main court.
(Image via FFT)