Spanish tennis star Paula Badosa was a bit sad after seeing that not a single Madrid Masters wildcard on the women's side was handed to a Spanish player. This week, the Madrid organizers announced wildcard recipients for this year's event.
On the men's side, four wildcards were handed and only went to a Spanish player. On the women's side, not a single widlcard was handed to a Spanish players.
Spanish tennis veteran Fernando Verdasco sounded off on the Madrid organizers after the wildcard recipients were announced.
“We find it surprising, as well as very frustrating, that the biggest tennis event in Spain shows so little (or no) support towards Spanish tennis players with the invitations granted, especially for the main draws (… ) Their commercial interests take precedence over Spanish sport and deviate completely from the trajectory followed in previous years (…) If we consider any other tournament in the same category, the support given to local players is immensely greater.
Without going any further, the Rome tournament, which takes place the week after Madrid, has already announced its first five invitations and all of them are for Italian players," the message Verdasco posted read.
Badosa: Receiving a Madrid wildcard meant a lot to me
Last year, Badosa reached the Madrid Masters semifinal before losing to former world No.
1 Ashleigh Barty. “Very sad to see things like this for Spanish tennis when there is a lot of potential. A year ago I entered the tournament with a wildcard. I had one of the best tournaments of my career, a tournament that I will never forget thanks to a wildcard," Badosa tweeted.
"It's a huge opportunity for everyone, and it's a shame that the only tournament we have at a level like this, this happens... We have to give our tennis players opportunities to continue growing." Badosa is now a much better player than she was a year ago and she will be among top favorites to win Madrid this year.