Rome - Swiss tennis star Roger Federer said he was left confused by the Italian Tennis Federation’s decision to double ticket prices after it was confirmed he would play in the tournament.
The 37-year-old was a late inclusion, with ticket prices immediately jumping from €60 to €132.
FIT president Angelo Binaghi offered an odd explanation when asked to defend the decision, saying: "We have doubled the price of tickets for Wednesday, the day Federer will play.
"We want to reward fans who had bought tickets before they knew Federer would play."
However, Federer found the explanation difficult to swallow.
"I heard some fans clearly were not happy about it. That's obviously disappointing to hear," Federer told the press on Tuesday.
"They made it (out) in a way like they rewarded the fans who bought tickets earlier, which is sort of strange, but okay.
"I just really hope it doesn't take away the fact I'm really happy to be here.
"There's going to be good crowds hopefully, good atmosphere. Personally I'm very happy to be here.
"I'm pumped up to play well. I mean, my excitement couldn't be bigger."
The 20-times Grand Slam champion faces Portugal's Joao Sousa on Wednesday.