Rafael Nadal defends Wimbledon scheduling: "I am little bit more than Ashleigh Barty"


With the resounding success of the women’s World Cup fresh in our minds, and in the wake of the #metoo movement, much attention has been garnered by calls for equality in all walks of life.

Wimbledon has recently been drawn into the discussion itself with questions raised over its court scheduling.

It has long been the case to see top seeded men plying their trade on Centre Court, relegating the top seeded women to outside courts.

Women’s world No.1 Ashleigh Barty, the recent French Open winner, has only played one match on Centre Court this year.

The 23-year-old Australian’s fourth-round defeat against Alison Riske taking place on No.2 Court to make way for Spaniard Nadal.

Men’s world No.2 Rafael Nadal has weighed in on the topic, speaking after his win over Joao Sousa.

“I am the world No 2 and I won 18 Grand Slams,” he said. “My answer is not no or yes. My answer is they make a decision.

“You are putting Ashleigh Barty in front of me. For me, both decisions are good.

“In the world of tennis today, honestly, my feeling is today I am little bit more than Ashleigh Barty, even if Ashleigh Barty is the first player of the world and she already won in the French Open and she is playing unbelievable good.


“But we can’t create polemics every single day about decisions that they have to take. At the end of the day they have to make a decision.”

He added: “A day like today, everybody is playing, of course [Novak] Djokovic is not playing in the Centre Court.

“For me the first day I have been playing in the Court 1. I played in Suzanne Lenglen in Roland Garros, if I’m not wrong, in the second round.

“Every day is a decision. We cannot create polemics about that.

“Court No 2, OK, they have to make decisions. Today they probably decided that. They have another girls [sic] playing on the Centre Court now.”

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