Since a few weeks, cancellations are increasing on the Fabrice Pastor circuit : two of the last four tournaments of the 2023 season did not take place. “Organizational problems” are often mentioned. But behind these end-of-season changes, is there another truth ?
Payment defaults on the A1?
What was just a rumor spread like wildfire. Players on the A1 circuit have not been paid for five months. In this case, the versions are mixed. On the one hand, we find speeches like that ofAlex Chozas, temporary partner of Lucho Capra on the WPT, who told the Spanish newspaper Sports world that in his case, “everything is fine“. But other players complain of non-payment, which can visibly go up to five months of unpaid debts. "They owe me almost two thousand euros for the last two months“, declares for example Fede Mouriño, one of the revelations of the year.
In this specific case, can we really blame Fabrice Pastor's circuit? If the A1 has not yet spoken on the subject, some communications officials said: “it's a lie and we have nothing to hide“. But if the A1 has nothing to be ashamed of, it is not the only actor to be taken into account. The other people responsible are… The promoters.
What are promoters?
On many tournaments, whether on the A1 circuit or on professional circuits like the World Padel Tour, promoters are often contacted. Who hasn't heard of Lisandro Borges, emblematic promoter of South America. In short, a promoter go take responsible for organizing sporting events.
We cannot choose a promoter by chance: he must be responsible for the event, whether in terms of organization, but also in terms of prize money. This last point requires a two-month preliminary study with relevant solvency guarantees, because if the promoter cannot pay, it is A1 who must do so…
And if the circuit obviously has nothing to be ashamed of regarding the players' payment defaults, this is not necessarily the case for the promoters. And the first biased are the players:”10 players called me because they needed help because they aren't getting paid“, said Facundo Guzzetti, content creator and linked to player representation in Lisandro Borges' agency.
What solutions for players?
Some payment defaults date back more than three months. Several players have not yet received their prize money for the Swedish Open, South Africa Open or even the Verbier Master which took place held from August 15 to 20, an event carried by the emblematic face of Stanislas Wawrinka.
Non-payment confirmed by the Spanish Antonio Luque and José Luis González, players without a contract with A1, who fell in the quarter-finals in Switzerland. Asked about payment during the Masters in Manhattan, they claimed not to have received the money. Same for Maxi Arce who emphasizes that “some like haven't paid yet as there appears to be some legal issues".
To assert their rights, players do so through the tour players associationLed by Andrés Britos, Argentinian player and president. If the promoters do not respect their commitments, it is up to Fabrice Pastor's circuit to take over. "Now the tension is between the promoters and the circuit. The first does not pay; the second prefers not to take orders even if it is ultimately his turn;", Explain Esteban Genoud, Argentinian journalist and player representative.
What to do for 2024?
For now, the most important thing for the tour players' association – and the players themselves – is that the situation is regularized as quickly as possible. "We will send a letter to the promoter of South Africa, which is the same as that of Sweden, to not only pay what they owe but also to support the event of the year next“, affirmed Britos, always for Sports world.
To overcome this problem, an advance payment formula hopes to end the promoter problem. “We try to ensure that, to confirm a tournament, 50% of the money is paid three months in advance, and the remaining 50% is paid one month before. The contracts are being verified by the association", Explain Andrés Britos about this situation. The latter was one of the main causes of tournament cancellations this season on the A1.
In this situation, difficult to dismantle the true from the false, the malicious accusations and the real problems. But in this jumble of information, we simply see that le padel always tries to strive for professionalism.
It was his brother who one day told him to accompany him on a track. padel, since then, Gwenaëlle has never left the court. Except when it comes to going to watch the broadcast of Padel Magazine, World Padel Tour… or Premier Padel…or the French Championships. In short, she is a fan of this sport.