Medvedev calls RG delay "ridiculous," Djokovic notes "challenges"

Medvedev calls RG delay "ridiculous," Djokovic notes "challenges"

Australian Open finalist Daniil Medvedev and champion Novak Djokovic discussed the decision to postpone Roland Garros, the second major tournament of 2021, by a week to address coronavirus concerns currently plaguing Paris.

The French Open's decision to delay its start by a week has been called "ridiculous" by Daniil Medvedev, though Novak Djokovic is just pleased to have the event almost on schedule.

"I was surprised by the decision to delay Roland Garros by one week," Medvedev told press in French at Monte Carlo, where he is playing this week. "It is ridiculous, it must be said. I'm not saying that in regards to the French federation or the French government, but what is happening globally. It seemed like the virus was going to disappear in a week in Paris."

The 25-year-old Russian has nevertheless decided to try to use the extra time on his least favorite surface, saying, "Then I told myself that it might allow me to prepare better for Roland Garros by making the best use of the two weeks following Rome, to try to do something good."

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The French federation has indicated that the week's delay could allow the event to have crowds and provide extra time for government restrictions to be lifted in France, which is in the midst of a four-week lockdown.

Djokovic, also playing at Monte Carlo, was reluctant to criticize the decision.

"It's hard to say. I am not in the federation, or the government, to understand everything," he was quoted as saying by French press. "The tournament will be played, and that's what we all want. And not in October, when it was cold [like 2020]."

But the Serb noted that it has led to scheduling issues—the second week of the tournament now conflicts with some grass events, and the extra week leading up to the Grand Slam will need to be filled.

"It's tough to say if it's a good or a bad decision because it affects a bit the schedule. For the French Open, it's good, for some grasscourt events less good. It's a challenge for the ATP," he said.

Djokovic is No. 1 and the top seed at Monte Carlo, while Medvedev is No. 2 in the rankings.

The tours are expected to release more announcements regarding scheduling adjustments.