Despite the best efforts of Tournament Director Herwig Straka, the entry list for this month’s Erste Bank Open in Vienna will not include Rafa Nadal.
Straka did however pull off one coup when he persuaded Novak Djokovic to play the event for the first time since 2007, with the World No. 1 chasing the bonus ranking points that will secure him the year-end world number one spot.
Straka had hoped that Nadal could also be enticed to Austria, but he has virtually given up on that now.
“I spoke to Rafael Nadal once this week and I don’t think he will come,” Straka said to Austrian Newspaper Der Standard.
“It wasn’t a financial issue with Novak Djokovic. The agreement was there quickly, Novak just wanted to play,”
“This would also be the case with Rafael Nadal , if he wanted to play”
“Djokovic wanting the ranking points was always my speculation, thank God it worked.
“He can make 500 free points, so he will definitely be fully motivated.”
Djokovic does come with some special requests of the TD but Straka says he is more than happy to satisfy them.
“Djokovic doesn’t come until the end of the week and has some other requirements.
“So that he can perform perfectly, he has an environment around him, from food to fitness, things that we have to meet, but that’s okay.”