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Davydenko next in line to slam 'perfect' Federer

ESPN staff
January 17, 2012 « Giggs & Beckham want London 2012 squad place | Chartbeat test »
Nikolay Davydenko was not happy at being forced to play an one of the outside courts at the Australian Open © Getty Images
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Roger Federer a ppears to be losing friends by the day after Nikolay Davydenko joined Rafael Nadal in attacking the Swiss maestro.

Federer, as ATP Player Council president, has been accused of being non-interventionist when it comes to supporting the complaints of his peers. After a year that saw many of the game's top names break down towards the end of the season, there appears to be a collective belief that the ATP Tour diary needs to be lightened.

Nadal was first to take issue with Federer, insisting the former world No. 1 is failing to use his status as arguably the game's greatest player in order to improve conditions for those around him.

"His [position] is easy: do not say anything, all positive, I am a 'gentleman', others get burned. We each have our opinion and maybe he likes the circuit. Me too, I like it, and I think it's better than most sports. That does not mean you cannot be better and that you should change things that are bad," Nadal said.

Now Davydenko - who lost in his Australian Open first round match on Monday - has supported Nadal's stance, insisting Federer only looks after himself in order to pursue the easy life. As a Council president, that is not what Davydenko craves from the Swiss.

"I don't know why Roger is not supporting the players," Davydenko, who was not happy about playing on one of the outside courts in Melbourne, said.

"He doesn't want ... any problems. He's a nice guy. He's winning grand slams. He's from Switzerland. He's perfect. He doesn't want to do anything; he just tries to be an outsider from this one.

"It is very easy [for Federer] to say, 'I am not going to say anything, everything is positive' and come off as a gentleman and burn the rest."

Federer chose to ignore Nadal's comments on Monday, saying, "We can't always agree on everything." And Nadal seemed to retract his complaints at a post-match press-conference, offering his apologies for speaking out.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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