Nadal and Federer to face Djokovic on crisis-hit ATP Council
Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer were voted back on to the ATP Player Council on Thursday where they are likely to find themselves at odds with the president and current world number one Novak Djokovic.
World number two Nadal and third-ranked Federer, who celebrated his 38th birthday on Thursday, rejoin the body following the resignations of Robin Haase, Jamie Murray, and Sergiy Stakhovsky prior to Wimbledon.
Djokovic has clashed with many fellow players with disagreements centered on the decision to dispense with the services of the ATP’s chief executive Chris Kermode, a popular figure in tennis.
Splits widened at Wimbledon when Djokovic was taken to task over his relationship with the disgraced Justin Gimelstob.
Former player Gimelstob, who has sat on the Player Council, pleaded no contest to assault charges in Los Angeles earlier this year for attacking a man in front of his wife and children at Halloween in 2018.
Djokovic has come under fire for refusing to rule out a possible return to the board for Gimelstob.
“I have a friendly relationship with Justin,” said Djokovic at Wimbledon.
An ATP spokesman said that Nadal and Federer will begin their roles with immediate effect and will serve until the end of the existing term which runs through to Wimbledon next year.
Britain’s Jamie Murray was one of the first players to congratulate Nadal and Federer.
“Massive shout out to Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer for stepping up to join the ATP Player Council,” he tweeted.
“Despite the sport’s current success, we live in chaotic times. My biggest achievement in the Council may well prove to be being part of the group of resignations that presented the opportunity for this to happen. Good luck!”