Hell hath no fury like a French tournament director scorned.
Andy Murray withdrew from this week’s ATP 250 level Open 13 tournament in Marseille, where he was top seed, stating on his website on February 12 that he needed “an extra week off to recuperate and recover for the long season ahead” after “playing in Australia for five weeks.”
Marseille’s tournament director thinks that’s a lame excuse.
Peeved TD Jean-Francois Caujolle was quoted on Monday in Daily Express:
“Murray did the same thing to me last year. He can’t know what it is to keep his word. A week ago, he asked me for a wild card to play doubles with his brother Jamie and I gave him one. A few days ago, he asked me for five hotel rooms and I gave him them.
“The No 1 seed of a tournament should have a sense of responsibility. If he does not respect his commitments, he should be suspended by the ATP.”
Rule No. 1 – never speak to the Daily Express when you’re angry. Wait until you’ve calmed down a little and talk with Sky Sports News. Caujolle’s comments via Sky Sports:
“I never said that he should be suspended, but it’s true I was really disappointed because he was my top player.
“There is a responsibility for the credibility of all the game when it’s a top player. Sometimes you have to force yourself and be responsible.
“I understand he’s quite young and it’s not a huge tournament but it’s quite disappointing and we had the same last year.
“One week before, to phone and say I am not coming would have been good. In that case I could have found another player, not as good as Andy, but made an offer to Marin Cilic or someone, but it was too late.
“A few minutes later Juan Martin Del Potro pulled out with a real injury so I lost my top two players.”
But “c’est la vie” says Cajuolle: “It’s not the fault of the ATP or even Andy. It’s just life.”
The ATP took Andy Murray’s side (via Yahoo! News):
“There are clear rules and regulations in place with regard to player withdrawals and Andy Murray followed them,” read their statement.
“We understand a situation like this can be frustrating for a tournament, but we are looking forward to a great week of tennis in Marseille with a strong field led by six of the world’s Top 20 players.”
Hmm. . .something tells me Andy Murray won’t be playing Marseille in 2011.
The Scot is scheduled to play in Dubai next week.