Matt Ebden: Novak Djokovic has been pushing hard to help lower-ranked players

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Matt Ebden: Novak Djokovic has been pushing hard to help lower-ranked players

Australian world No. 293 Matt Ebden says 17-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic has been pushing hard in recent weeks to make something for the lower-ranked players. Djokovic, ranked at No. 1 in the world, proposed that top-100 players each donate from 5000-30,000 to player relief fund -- the money would be distributed to those players most affected by the Tour suspension.

"There’s been a lot of discussion in the last six weeks from everyone. From Novak to guys ranked 200. Novak’s been really pushing to help the players lower in the rankings," Ebden said during his appearance on The First Serve.

"He’s got backing from the grand slams for $500,000 each and I think $1.2million from the ATP. They are looking now at doing a selection criteria, or an application for this relief fund." Ebden, a former world No.

39, says he has been getting some good practices in recent months as he hopes the season will resume as soon as possible. "I was physically and mentally fresh for a new season. I’m in Perth and have had six to eight weeks of training.

Some weeks more full on and other weeks just some fun to keep it stimulating. We’ve just been trying to segment the months into a few week blocks at a time," Ebden said. The Australian picked up a second round exit at the Canberra Challenger, before he was beaten in the second round at the Bangalore Challenger.

Ebden tried to sneak into the main draws of the Australian Open and Pune but he failed to make it past the qualifying at the tournaments.