Federer pleads for no panic measures over Wimbledon pull-outs

Roger Federer (Getty Images)
Roger Federer (Getty Images)

London - Roger Federer pleaded with Grand Slams not to be panicked into reducing matches to best-of-three sets after injured players were accused of taking the money and running on Tuesday.

Federer reached the Wimbledon second round when Alexandr Dolgopolov quit when trailing 6-3, 3-0 after just 43 minutes on Centre Court complaining of an ankle injury.

Earlier, title rival Novak Djokovic booked his second round spot in just 40 minutes when Martin Klizan, suffering from a calf injury, retired at 6-3, 2-0 down.

It meant that the Centre Court crowd had seen just 83 minutes of action involving the two men who have won 10 Wimbledon titles between them.

"I feel for the crowd," said Federer. "They're there to watch good tennis."

Seven men have retired from the first round - on Monday, Victor Troicki quit after just 20 minutes.

That brief stay was beaten on Tuesday when Serb compatriot Janko Tipsarevic quit his match after 15 minutes.

First round losers all receive £35 000 (R600 000).

There is a rule on the main ATP Tour, but not at the Slams, that an injured player can give up his place to a 'lucky loser' from qualifying while keeping the prize money.

The thinking behind the move is to preserve the integrity of a tournament and prevent fans from feeling short-changed.

But Federer does not want to see the Slams opt for the best-of-three sets format rather than the traditional best-of-five.

"I hope it doesn't happen. But I believe that more players clearly would finish their matches," said Federer who is bidding for a record eighth Wimbledon title.

"A player should not go on court if he knows he should not finish. The question is, did they truly believe they were going to finish. 

"If they did, I think it's okay that they walk on court. Otherwise, I feel they should give up the spot. 

"The ATP has adjusted its rule. Maybe the slams should have a look at what they could do for the players to make it just a little bit easier."

Federer believes that players who insist on competing in the first round despite obvious physical ailments should not necessarily be damned.

"For some, they just want to be out there because they feel like miracles happen: maybe the other guy retires, or maybe the other guy is carrying an injury. 

"If I win, I have a day off, maybe I will feel better on Thursday. All these things play into the equation as well. Don't forget those things as well. Could be rain, come back the next day. You never know what the player's motives are."

Djokovic said he backed the ATP rule being used at the Slams but also refused to criticise opponents who fail to finish.

"If you walk out on the Centre Court, there is a responsibility. I'm sure they tried their best, but it is what it is," said the Serb.

America's John Isner said players owed it to the fans to stay and fight on court for as long as possible.

"If it's excruciating pain, okay, you can't play," said Isner who famously played an 11-hour match spread over three days to beat Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon seven years ago.

"If something is tweaked here or there and you feel like you can give it a decent go without hurting yourself, I think they should stay out there and I think you owe it to the fans. 

"I know the Wimbledon Centre Court didn't get their money's worth today. That's for sure."

Tipsarevic insisted that with $8 million won in his career, he didn't need to play for the £35 000 he earned for quitting his match when 5-0 down against Jared Donaldson.

He said he was given the all-clear by doctors to play despite suffering searing pain in his hamstring.

"Lots of players fight through Challengers to get to the main draw of a Slam. They have to pay coaches and their teams," said Tipsarevic.

"They get the chance to earn £35 000 and I don't think anyone has the right to judge them because the same guy may then go on to a Challenger and make just 300."

Wimbledon results on Tuesday, the second day of the 2017 championships at the All England Club (x denotes seeding):


First round

Radu Albot (MDA) bt Facundo Bagnis (ARG) 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (11/9), 7-6 (7/3)

Milos Raonic (CAN x6) bt Jan-Lennard Struff (GER) 7-6 (7/5), 6-2, 7-6 (7/4)

Mikhail Youzhny (RUS) bt Nicolas Mahut (FRA) 6-2, 7-5, 6-4

Andrey Rublev (RUS) bt Stefano Travaglia (ITA) 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 7-5, 1-6, 7-5

Albert Ramos (ESP x25) bt Jordan Thompson (AUS) 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4)

Jack Sock (USA x17) bt Christian Garín (CHI) 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-3

Sebastian Ofner (AUT) bt Thomaz Belluci (BRA) 6-2, 6-3, 6-2

Francis Tiafoe (USA) bt Robin Haase (NED) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/5), 7-5

Alexander Zverev (GER x10) bt Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) 6-4, 7-6 (7/3), 6-3

Grigor Dimitrov (BUL x13) bt Diego Schwartzman (ARG) 7-6 (7/4), 6-2, 6-2

Marcos Baghdatis (CYP) bt James Ward (GBR) 6-4, 6-4, 6-3

Dudi Sela (ISR) bt Marcel Granollers (ESP) 4-6, 6-3, 1-6, 6-2, 6-1

John Isner (USA x23) bt Taylor Fritz (USA) 6-4, 7-6 (7/3), 6-3

Mischa Zverev (GER x27) bt Bernard Tomic (AUS) 6-4, 6-3, 6-4

Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) bt Taro Daniel (JPN) 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2

Dusan Lajovic (SRB) bt Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) 6-4, 6-4, 6-4

Roger Federer (SUI x3) bt Aleksandr Dolgopolov (UKR) 6-3, 3-0 - retired

Dominic Thiem (AUT x8) bt Vasek Pospisil (CAN) 6-4, 6-4, 6-3

Gilles Simon (FRA) bt Nicolás Jarry (CHI) 7-6 (7/4), 6-3, 6-3

Jared Donaldson (USA) bt Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) 5-0 - retired

David Ferrer (ESP) bt Richard Gasquet (FRA x22) 6-3, 6-4, 5-7, 6-2

Steve Darcis (BEL) bt Ricardas Berankis (LTU) 4-6, 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3

Ryan Harrison (USA) bt Borna Coric (CRO) 7-6 (7/4), 6-4, 7-6 (8/6)

Tomas Berdych (CZE x11) bt Jérémy Chardy (FRA) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-4

Gael Monfils (FRA x15) bt Daniel Brands (GER) 6-3, 7-5, 6-4

Kyle Edmund (GBR) bt Alex Ward (GBR) 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-1

Yuichi Sugita (JPN) bt Brydan Klein (GBR) 7-6 (7/5), 6-3, 6-0

Adrian Mannarino (FRA) bt Feliciano Lopez (ESP x19) 5-7, 6-1, 6-1, 4-3 - retired

Juan Martín Del Potro (ARG x29) bt Thanasi Kokkinakis (AUS) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-4

Ernests Gulbis (LAT) bt Víctor Estrella (DOM) 6-1, 6-1, 6-2

Adam Pavlásek (CZE) bt Ernesto Escobedo (USA) 6-7 (7/9), 6-1, 6-3, 6-1

Novak Djokovic (SRB x2) bt Martin Kli┼żan (SVK) 6-3, 2-0 - retired


First round

Angelique Kerber (GER x1) bt Irina Falconi (USA) 6-4, 6-4

Kirsten Flipkens (BEL) bt Misaki Doi (JPN) 6-4, 6-3

Shelby Rogers (USA) bt Julia Boserup (USA) 6-3, 4-6, 6-3

Lucie Safarova (CZE x32) bt Océane Dodin (FRA) 6-2, 6-2

Sorana Cirstea (ROM) bt Kiki Bertens (NED x23) 7-6 (7/4), 7-5

Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) bt Magda Linette (POL) 1-6, 6-2, 6-3

Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) bt Kateryna Bondarenko (UKR) 6-2, 7-5

Garbiñe Muguruza (ESP x14) bt Ekaterina Alexandrova (RUS) 6-2, 6-4

Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x9) bt Jelena Jankovic (SRB) 7-6 (7/3), 6-0

Christina McHale (USA) bt Katie Boulter (GBR) 3-6, 7-5, 6-3

Kristína Kucová (SVK) bt Bianca Andreescu (CAN) 6-4, 6-3

Timea Bacsinszky (SUI x19) bt Mónica Puig (PUR) 6-1, 3-6, 6-0

Varvara Lepchenko (USA) bt Lauren Davis (USA x28) 6-4, 7-5

Polona Hercog (SLO) bt Annika Beck (GER) 6-2, 6-1

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) bt Alison Van Uytvanck (BEL) 6-3, 6-1

Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS x7) bt Ons Jabeur (TUN) 6-3, 6-2

Karolína Plíšková (CZE x3) bt Evgeniya Rodina (RUS) 6-1, 6-4

Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) bt Monica Niculescu (ROM) 6-4, 6-1

Lesya Tsurenko (UKR) bt Julia Görges (GER) 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (10/8), 6-4

Viktorija Golubic (SUI) bt Zhang Shuai (CHN x30) 6-3, 6-7 (2/7), 6-1

Petra Martic (CRO) bt Daria Gavrilova (AUS x20) 6-4, 2-6, 10-8

Denisa Allertová (CZE) bt Risa Ozaki (JPN) 7-6 (7/5), 2-6, 6-3

Zarina Diyas (KAZ) bt Xinyun Han (CHN) 6-3, 6-4

Arina Rodionova (AUS) bt Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS x16) 3-6, 7-6 (8/6), 9-7

Kristina Mladenovic (FRA x12) bt Pauline Parmentier (FRA) 6-1, 6-3

Alison Riske (USA) bt Sloane Stephens (USA) 6-2, 7-5

Tatjana Malek (GER) bt Anastasia Potapova (RUS) 6-3, 2-2 - retired

Coco Vandeweghe (USA x24) bt Mona Barthel (GER) 7-5, 6-2

Darya Kasatkina (RUS x29) bt Zheng Saisai (CHN) 6-2, 6-4

Anett Kontaveit (EST) bt Lara Arruabarrena (ESP) 6-2, 6-4

Tsvetana Pironkova (BUL) bt Sara Errani (ITA) 6-1, 6-4

Caroline Wozniacki (DEN x5) bt Tímea Babos (HUN) 6-4, 4-6, 6-1

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