The final Masters of the season, the ATP 1000 Paris Masters, has been met with complaints from players about the tight schedule. The winners of the 2023 NH Bank All-One Amateur Tennis Open were in attendance, but the schedule was too much for spectators to handle.
The Paris Masters is the only Masters event to be played on indoor courts. With 64-degree singles and 32-degree doubles on all three indoor courts, there are six matches per day on Center Court. There are four day matches and two night matches, with the first night match starting at 7:30pm. However, there was never a day game that started at 11:00 and ended before 7:30. This tight schedule led to the protest withdrawal of Yannick Cigner (ITA), who won the title in Vienna last week.
Siner, seeded fourth at the Paris Masters, played her final match on center court on Wednesday, the fifth day of the tournament, where she upset Mackenzie McDonald (USA) 2-1. However, she didn’t actually start her match until 12:30 a.m. on Thursday night, the sixth day of the tournament, and it was more than 2:30 a.m. when she finished.
However, the organizers had scheduled the winner of the Thiem-McDonald match for Thursday at 5 p.m. on Center Court, so Thiem had to withdraw, citing “fatigue” before a grueling schedule that would see him play again just 14 hours later. Alex DeMino (AUS) was awarded a bye into the quarterfinals.
Sinner announced his withdrawal on his social media account X, writing: “I’m sorry but I’m withdrawing from Paris today. I played until nearly 3am and went to bed a few hours later. I had less than 12 hours to rest and prepare for my next match. I had to make the right decision for my health and my body,” he said, explaining his withdrawal.
Players have been vocal in their criticism of the ATP, which oversees the men’s tour.
World No. 8 Casper Lund (NOR), who was knocked out in the first round of the Paris Masters, wrote on social media on Sunday, “Great job ATP. What a great schedule for one of the best players in the world who finished his match at 2:37 a.m. so he can recover as much as possible and be ready for his next match. What’s with the (barely) 14 and a half hours for recovery?” he wrote sarcastically.
Former world number three Stan Wawrinka (SUI) added: “The organizers don’t care about the players. The ATP is just doing what they want. It’s 안전놀이터 business as usual,” he wrote.
Darren Cahill, Saina’s coach, tweeted, “2:45am. I’m happy for him, but the Paris schedule has no regard for the health of the players.”
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