McEnroe Calls Out French Open Organizers For Denying Nadal Seeding Status

McEnroe Calls Out French Open Organizers For Denying Nadal Seeding Status

by Nurein Ahmed

John McEnroe was far from impressed by Roland Garros organizers, who did not offer Rafael Nadal a seeding spot at this year's tournament.

Nadal suffered his first-ever first-round defeat at the French Open at the hands of Alexander Zverev in the standout match on Monday, which was watched by thousands inside Court Philippe-Chatrier and millions worldwide.

The Spaniard produced a decent performance with flashes of brilliance reminding us of his golden days, but predictably, this was always going to be too steep of a challenge, considering his physical and mental struggles coming to the tournament.

He had self-doubts about his game even though he never lost a practice set, and Zverev just played a solid match. Before the tournament, tennis fans knew that a draw of this magnitude was possible because Nadal was using a protected ranking to enter the event.

The tournament quelled the idea of giving Nadal special treatment. So he would face any of the 127 other men in the field, including seeded players. As was the case when the draw was revealed last week, the 14-time champion was paired against fourth seed and in-form man Alexander Zverev.

Tennis commentator McEnroe spoke to MARCA to express his disappointment that a player of Nadal's caliber, given his unrivaled record in Paris, was not given special seeding status.

"It doesn't make sense for someone who has won 14 times not to be seeded. It's the way the tournament has always acted. It's crazy to me. It's the most interesting first round of a major that I can remember and the toughest of the Open Era for someone like Nadal."

The legendary American was speaking prior to Nadal's inevitable defeat, which was just his fourth since his Roland Garros debut in 2005. McEnroe opined that it might be time for Nadal to step away but stated that he has earned the right to do whatever he wants with the second phase of his life.

"He has to do whatever he wants. He loves to compete and if he loses to Zverev it doesn't mean that all his records at Roland Garros will be lost. Maybe it's time for him to be a father and it's time for everyone."

"If you asked me ten years ago how many times he was going to take the trophy I would have said four or five. People like him, Novak or Roger are Superman."


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