Drewett Honoured In Madrid Minute Silence
by ATP Staff|
The Big Four of Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal led a minute’s silence in memory of ATP Executive Chairman and President Brad Drewett on Sunday at the Mutua Madrid Open. ATP and WTA players took to the Manolo Santana court at the Caja Magica to pay their respects before the first-round match between Fernando Verdasco and David Goffin.
Drewett passed away on Friday, aged 54, at his home in Sydney, following a battle with Motor Neurone Disease.
On Saturday, the BMW Open in Munich and the Portugal Open in Oeiras had honoured Drewett and his achievements in tennis with a moment of silence. Both tributes were aired on national television.
"It's very sad," said Djokovic. "My condolences to his family. It’s devastating news for not just us tennis players, but the tennis world. He was a very brave man with the courage to stand up and try to change some things in our sport for the better. We remember him as a very calm, composed and intelligent man, who loved this sport with all his heart, while he was playing, coaching and then as the president of ATP. So I wish his family all the best and to be strong in this sad moment."
Federer added, "Obviously Brad wasn't just the president of the ATP but was a player himself, a board member. He's given so much time and effort to the ATP, and I think this is really what we will try to honour in a small way today. Then obviously, I think many more players got to know him through his position in the last one and a half years.
"He was always very nice to work with. Very honest. Very nice. Gentle. I've really enjoyed every step of the way working with him. For me, it was hard seeing him not be the same anymore towards the end physically. But we can only appreciate what he's done for us and what he did until the last moment he really possibly could. That will never go away. I'm sure that the ATP and the players will come up with something for the legacy of Brad Drewett. It's very important."
Murray said, "I think it was a shock for everyone. We heard the bad news in Australia with his diagnosis. I mean the end came extremely quickly. I knew him a little bit as a person. I spent a bit of time with him over the past couple of years. The players got on well with him. We had a lot of meetings with him, spent a lot of time speaking to the Grand Slams with him and he was an extremely nice person. It's sad obviously for the whole of the tour to have to see that, but hopefully he’s in a better place now."
Nadal said, “The only thing we can do is say thank you for everything he has done for our sport, all the support, and all the good things he has done these years to help us and to help us to have a better sport. I just give all my support from here to his family and all his beloved and close friends. I think he was a very loved person inside our circuit. It's a sad moment for all of us."