Top players upset about blue clay
MADRID — Novak Djokovic joined Rafael Nadal in declaring he won’t play again on the new blue clay court at the Madrid Open after losing to Janko Tipsarevic 7-6 (2), 6-3 Friday in an all-Serb quarterfinal.
Tipsarevic won for the second time in five matches against Djokovic, who last lost at this stage in November at the Paris Masters.
“I want to forget this week as soon as possible and move on to the real clay courts,” the top-ranked Djokovic said. “Here you can’t predict the ball bounce or movement.They can do whatever they want, but I won’t be here next year if this clay stays.”
On the women’s side, Serena Williams eased past Maria Sharapova 6-1, 6-3 to advance to the semifinals. Also making the semis was top-ranked Victoria Azarenka, who rallied past French Open winner Li Na 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Azarenka agreed with Nadal and Djokovic in their criticism of the court.
“You feel unstable sometimes, actually, a lot of times,” she said. “But right now there is no point on talking about it. After the tournament, all the players can get together and discuss it.”
Nadal lost to Fernando Verdasco on Thursday. Afterward, the Spaniard said he wouldn’t return to the tournament unless it reverts to red clay.