World No. 29 Benoit Paire absolutely blasted the Australian Open organizers following his first round exit at Melbourne Park. Paire, seeded at No. 25, lost to Egor Gerasimov as the world No. 79 won in four sets 6-2 2-6 7-6 (5) 7-5.
Paire was one of the 72 players that were placed in hard quarantine upon arriving to Melbourne. Paire was unable to leave his hotel room for 14 days and that left him without a much-needed practice prior to the Australian Open.
"Their tournament in my opinion is shitty,” Paire told L’Equipe, as revealed on Tennis Majors. “My game and attitude today were OK, but overall I’m very disappointed by this event. I didn’t sign up for this.
I signed for a protocol where I would be able to practice for 14 days”.
Paire not enjoying tennis at the moment
Paire kicked off his 2021 season at the ATP Cup, where he lost to Italian Fabio Fognini before retiring his second match to Austria's Dominic Thiem.
"We had half-empty planes so you did not come in contact with anyone. And then you have a positive case and everyone is in quarantine. I did not come into contact with any person in the plane and after I went to the hotel on my own," Paire added.
“There was also a positive case on the flight to Adelaide, but there they didn’t have to quarantine. There should be the same rules for everyone. I do not understand why there is not. It’s not fair for everyone.
It’s not fair. It’s a scandal. Short preparation…. Really, in my opinion, this tournament is shitty. I still have difficulties understanding how you can organize tournaments and people don’t feel welcome.
They have a huge loss if they don’t organise the tournament, so they have to do it whatever the cost. It’s about money”. “Most of the players come and think, ‘Oh there’s a little money to make here,’ so they come.
I’m the first among them. But at the end of the day, if you have to make so many sacrifices and it still turns out so badly, with such mayhem, at some point you just have to say ‘stop.’ I don’t quite understand where we are going, I don’t quite understand what ATP is doing.
It becomes almost grotesque. For me, tennis is not that. Frankly, I’m not enjoying it”.