The first season 100% Premier Padel is launched, and new controversies are already being established among these, certain aspects have stood out to observers: Wild Cards were awarded to “beginner” players.

One might believe that the term “beginner” is excessive, and yet… Without wanting to designate a player in particular – because that is absolutely not the objective of this column – the ambition of this article is to know if yes or no we must absolutely award wild cards to players from the host country when this host country does not necessarily offer players from padel confirmed.

When we see that certain attributions are made to players who barely know the first tactical rules of this sport, do we have the right to say to ourselves that this rule must be relaxed or better regulated?

Solution: a toilet for a world top 300 player

For example, we have 4 “Major” (the 4 tournaments of padel the most important in the world), and while it is undeniable that France, Italy and even Mexico have experienced players, Qatar does not currently have a pool of experienced players, particularly among the women. Therefore, could the FIP try to regulate the allocation of these WCs, for example by stipulating that if these players are not part of the world top 300, they cannot obtain a wild card? This would avoid us finding ourselves in a situation that would distort the tournament.

And as we tend to say that we are chauvinistic and that we criticize, for example, because France does not benefit from it. Precisely, the 100% French pair, Alix Collombon / Jessica Ginier, found herself facing a pair that could be considered “amateur” to speak diplomatically. The idea is not to be mean or to criticize these players who had the courage to enter the arena during one of the 4 Majors of the padel international. We obviously have deep respect for these players who come on the court to play for less than an hour and often go home with a severe defeat.

The question asked is: how to explain to fans, to young people, to those who are launching into the padel that a player in the main draw of a major tournament serves on the same side as the receiver... And that the referee and the opponents prefer to turn a blind eye...

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We think of all those players who don't have a Major at home, whose level is very high and who would have really liked to get this wild card. We think of these players who invest so much and who are banned from this wild card in favor of players who are sometimes just starting out and who obtain a wild card solely thanks to their nationality.

A poisoned gift?

And then, if this remains an unforgettable and above all unexpected memory for these “amateur” players who take advantage of this wild card, does this really do the players and the competition itself a service?

Social media is terrible from time to time, and we are not going to relay certain comments here that could hurt these players, but at the same time, we cannot pretend that there is not a problem with this rule too flexible, and let's admit it unfair.

We talked about the French pair who are indirectly offered (and good for France) a second round for a gala match against the 3 seed Triay/Fernandez Sanchez. We are not going to complain when others inherit much less favorable pictures. But all the same, hasn't a limit been crossed?

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We could also talk about this first round in the main draw with a match that lasts 36 minutes and could have been much quicker. The Argentinians also played the diplomacy card by leaving one game in each set. We can clearly see the inconsistency of the system.

Favorable for Wild Cards to boost and promote the padel in a country. But a Wild Card for a first round of the main draw of one of the biggest tournaments in the world? In the eyes of all fans of padel ? In the eyes of professional players who have been fighting for so many years for the chance to join a main draw?

Finally, seeing these players who obviously have nothing to do with it sometimes being mocked for their level of padel in such a tournament, is this really doing them a favor?

We are waiting for your opinions.

Franck Binisti

Franck Binisti discovers the padel at the Club des Pyramides in 2009 in the Paris region. Since padel is part of his life. You often see him touring France going to cover the major events of padel French.