Rafa Nadal has been dragged into the drama that has rocked the French Open qualifying rounds after up to five players were withdrawn due to COVID-19.
On Monday, it was announced five players have been withdrawn from the French Open qualifying tournament after two players and a coach tested positive for COVID-19, organisers have said.
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The qualifiers will begin later on Monday, with the main draw set to commence on September 27.
Organisers did not reveal the names of those who had been pulled out but Damir Dzumhur said he had been withdrawn because his coach Petar Popović had returned a positive test.
Dzunhur wrote he was ‘devastated’ to be withdrawn on his Instagram.
But his coach has spoken and hit out at the tournament organisers and claimed the test was most likely a false positive since he had coronavirus back in July.
He also claimed if clay court king and World No.2 Nadal was in Dzumhur’s situation, he would be granted more opportunities to prove he could compete.
"I'm sure if it had happened to a bigger player he would have had the opportunity to prove that it's not a fake," Popovic said.
"I think if Rafael Nadal was in our situation, he would be entitled to a second or third test to verify. So we're really disgusted with what's happening to us.
“We leave with a bitter taste. Damir was just outside the final draw, two or three places outside."
The French Open will be held from Sept. 27-Oct. 11 after being moved from its usual late May-June slot.
The FFT is planning to allow 5,000 spectators per day following a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in the country. It had previously said the claycourt major would permit a maximum of 11,500 fans per day.
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The Spaniard was chasing a third consecutive title in Rome and had never previously lost to the Argentine in his professional career.
The nine-time Rome winner slumped 6-2, 7-5 on a humid night in the Italian capital to a player he had beaten in all nine of their previous clashes.
It was Nadal's last chance to tune-up before his bid for a 13th French Open title - a feat that would see him match Roger Federer's record of 20 grand slam singles titles.
"It's a completely special and unpredictable year," Nadal said.
"I'll probably go back home and then let's see what's going on. I did my job here.
"I fought until the end. But losing that many serves, you can't expect to win a match.
"Something that I have to fix. I know how to do it.
"I'm going to keep working and keep practising with the right attitude and try to give me a chance to be ready.
"I did a couple of things well and other things bad. And that's it. At least I played three matches."