Cameron Norrie bemoans ‘strange’ rule benefitting Novak Djokovic

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British No 1 Cameron Norrie bemoans ‘strange’ rule that sees Novak Djokovic benefit from Wimbledon title to ensure qualification for ATP Finals in Turin… despite NO ranking points being on offer due to ban on Russian players

  • Novak Djokovic has been assured of qualifying for ATP Finals in Turin this month
  • British No 1 Cameron Norrie has hinted the Serbian is getting special treatment 
  • A lack of ranking points at Wimbledon scuppered Norrie’s hopes of going to Italy
  • But Djokovic, who won Wimbledon, is benefitting from a key piece of regulation 

Cam Norrie has suggested that Novak Djokovic is getting favourable treatment as the fallout from Wimbledon’s loss of ranking points drags into winter.

Djokovic has been assured of qualifying for this month’s eight-man ATP Finals in Turin, on the basis of his one Grand Slam title this year, gleaned at SW19 in July.

The existing rule granting that privilege has remained in place, but for every other player who did well at Wimbledon there was no benefit to their status. Points were stripped due to the ban on Russian players.

Djokovic defeated Nick Kyrgios to win the Wimbledon title

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Cameron Norrie (left) sees a rule allowing Novak Djokovic (right) to be the only player to benefit from a Wimbledon without ranking points in the summer summer as ‘strange’

Norrie would have gained 720 points for making the semi-finals, and the lack of ranking recognition has helped scupper his chances of making the field in Turin.

Not only that, but the absence of points could also sink Great Britain’s hopes of making the 18-nation United Cup, the £13million mixed team event planned for Australia in January.

Djokovic could qualify for the ATP Finals anyway if he won this week’s Paris Masters, but otherwise he is relying on a regulation which – with an apparent inconsistency – is still recognising what he did at The Championships.

Norrie was a semi-finalist at Wimbledon and would have earned 720 ranking points - only none were made available after the grass-court slam banned participation of Russian players

Norrie was a semi-finalist at Wimbledon and would have earned 720 ranking points – only none were made available after the grass-court slam banned participation of Russian players

‘Novak obviously qualified from Wimbledon so that seems a bit strange,’ said Norrie, who made the second round in Paris on Monday with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic.

‘I don’t know if that was the rule before or not, but its seems unfair, I guess for Nick Kyrgios as well. 

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‘He lost in the final and he gets nothing. I knew that I hadn’t had the points all along, but I was still in with pretty decent chance I thought.’

The Australian would also have been in contention for Turin, but had to forfeit the bumper 1,200 points he made at SW19.

Stuart Duguid, Kyrgios’s agent, observed: ‘First and foremost, Novak deserves to be in Turin. But it feels arbitrary that he is the only player to benefit from his performances at Wimbledon. 

‘Players’ endorsement contracts are affected by their year-end ranking and whether or not they qualify for the Finals. Many, such as Nick, will be out of pocket, whereas Novak has been made whole.’

Stuart Duguid, Kyrgios's agent, described it as 'arbitrary' that only Djokovic benefits from his performances at Wimbledon, with many others losing out on huge sums due to ranking drops

Stuart Duguid, Kyrgios’s agent, described it as ‘arbitrary’ that only Djokovic benefits from his performances at Wimbledon, with many others losing out on huge sums due to ranking drops

An ATP spokesman said: ‘The removal of ranking points at this year’s Wimbledon was done on the basis of fairness to all players, and no further rule changes linked to the competition’s status were deemed necessary. 

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‘As such, any player competing at Wimbledon or the other Grand Slams this year had the opportunity to qualify for Turin via the Grand Slam qualification rule.’

The lack of points at Wimbledon has had a widespread distorting effect on the men’s and women’s listings. That is now extending to qualification for the new mixed event taking place ahead of the Australian Open.

The complex entry system is largely determined by the year-end ranking of a nation’s top player of either sex. With Norrie now down at 14, Britain are just outside the cut-off at present, although that could yet change.

‘I’d love to play, I think it’s a pretty cool event. I’m going to push as much as I can and hopefully try to help the team out to try to get in,’ said Norrie. ‘It will be interesting to see how they do the list.’

Britain’s four top men are looking to end their seasons strongly in Paris and on Monday night Andy Murray was facing Frenchman Gilles Simon.

Djokovic can still qualify for the ATP Finals outright if he is able to win this week's Paris Masters

Djokovic can still qualify for the ATP Finals outright if he is able to win this week’s Paris Masters

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