Tennis Prose




Jun/22

17

Is The ATP Sportsmanship Award Rigged?

By Scoop Malinowski

There are no coincidences. So it can’t be a coincidence that since 2004, only Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have won the ATP Sportsmanship Award. Federer has won the “award” thirteen times and Nadal has won it six times, including the last four years.

Indeed, Federer and Nadal are very good sportsman with very few controversial moments on court during their illustrious careers. But are they really worthy of monopolozing this prestigious and valuable ATP accolade for almost two decades? Would awarding other players, even lower ranked players, been more fair and productive to help create more stars in the ATP?

As an astute observer of the ATP since the early 1990s, I can think of many other ATP competitors who have comported themselves on the court equally to the fine manners of Federer and Nadal, or maybe even better.

Feliciano Lopez is a beacon of sportsmanship and to my knowledge has never been involved in any drama or controversy, faked an injury, cursed on court or shown fits of rage like smacking a ball at a ball kid or picking his butt before every point of his career.

There are a lot of players like Lopez who are absolutely deserving of winning the ATP Sportsmanship Award. I will name names… Diego Schwartzman, Kei Nishikori, Matt Ebden, Marin Cilic, Miomir Kecmanovic, John Isner, Sam Querrey, Pablo Carreno Busta, Roberto Batista Agut, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Richard Gasquet, Gael Monfils, Karen Khachanov, Lloyd Harris, David Goffin, Juan Martin Del Potro, Tommy Paul, Taylor Fritz, Jack Sock, Yoshihito Nishioka, Jason Kubler, Jordan Thompson, Christian Harrison, Casper Ruud, Horacio Zeballos, Dominic Thiem, Jannik Sinner, Gilles Simon, Brandon Nakashima, Adrian Mannarino, Soonwoo Kwon, Hubert Hurkacz, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Marcos Giron, Cristian Garin, Kyle Edmund, Grigor Dimitrov, Federico Delbonis, Borna Coric, Alex de Minaur, Ricardas Berankis, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Radu Albot, Kevin Anderson, etc. Sorry if I omitted any other players who have conducted their tennis careers with impeccable respect, integrity and good sportsmanship, surely there are several more who deserve to be mentioned.

You have to wonder why the ATP is giving Federer and Nadal preferential treatment to repeatedly win an award when many other players are just as worthy. Is it about manufacturing images and marketability which increases the star power of the two biggest stars in history at the expense and equality for lesster known players?

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7 comments

  • Sam · June 21, 2022 at 12:54 pm

    Scoop, I posted a comment here yesterday, but it still hasn’t shown up.

    What happened to it? ๐Ÿค”

  • Scoop Malinowski · June 21, 2022 at 2:43 pm

    Sam, I scoured the trashed comments and spam and it was not there. Maybe it was your last comment on how fake injuries can affect a match? If not sorry for the inconvenience.

  • Sam · June 22, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    No, Scoop, that was not itโ€”I submitted three separate comments that day. Well, we’ll see if I can reconstruct it:

    Is the ATP Sportsmanship Award rigged?

    Short answer: yes.

    Long answer: absolutely yes. ๐Ÿฆนโ€โ™‚๏ธ

    If someone were really a good sportsman, after receiving this award multiple times, he’d eventually say, “Okay, please don’t give me this award anymore. I’m officially withdrawing my name from consideration. Let some other deserving player win it instead.” But of course, not greedy Federer and Nadal. ๐Ÿคฎ And Djokovic hasn’t even won the award once???

    I bet the voting for this award was so easy to rig that they didn’t even need to use Dominion voting machines. ๐Ÿ˜

  • Scoop Malinowski · June 23, 2022 at 7:04 am

    Sorry about that Sam no idea what happened. The wacky thing about that award is Fed and Rafa are not even the best examples of ATP sportsmanship, they are very good but the other guys I mentioned are superior. Maybe Fed Rafa deserve it once but that’s it. Should be a one term award because there are so many worthy candidates.

  • Scoop Malinowski · June 23, 2022 at 7:27 am

    Japan has banned same sex marriage, hope Martina and BJK don’t demand the tennis establishment penalize Japan and ban all ATP WTA tournaments played in Japan and ban all Japanese players from playing Grand Slams.

  • Sam · June 23, 2022 at 8:31 am

    Sorry about that Sam no idea what happened.

    No biggie, Scoop. ๐Ÿ˜ But please just be aware that perhaps there’s some glitch on your Web site.

    The wacky thing about that award is Fed and Rafa are not even the best examples of ATP sportsmanship

    I would say that’s putting it mildly. In fact, they wouldn’t even make my top twenty. ๐Ÿ˜ค While Djokovic has his problems too, I’d definitely rate him higher than both overall.

    Should be a one term award because there are so many worthy candidates.

    Right. But it just goes to show that the award was never really about “sportsmanship” in the first place.

    Japan has banned same sex marriage

    Really? Good for them! ๐Ÿ‘

    hope Martina and BJK donโ€™t demand the tennis establishment penalize Japan and ban all ATP WTA tournaments played in Japan and ban all Japanese players from playing Grand Slams.

    Who cares what those has-beens do? ๐Ÿคก

  • Scoop Malinowski · June 23, 2022 at 8:36 am

    Yes at this point is the ATP Propaganda Sportsmanship award, a sham. Like to see Gasquet, Lopez, Hurkacz, Schwartzman, Agut, Busta, Khachanov, Garin, Monfils or Isner win it, they deserve it as do others. Unfortunately Martina and BJK have been installed as mouthpieces for the establishment and their voices influence a great many.

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