Melbourne: The ATP is listening to players' grievances and is still the best body to represent their interests, the new chairman of the men's professional tennis tour said on Wednesday. (Agencies)
Speaking after last Saturday's meeting of the players, at which a boycott of the Australian Open was proposed, Brad Drewett said he thought much of the media coverage had been "sensational" even if he conceded there were problems.
"There is some frustration on certain points within the game," Drewett told a news conference at Melbourne Park.
"Nothing's ever perfect in any world, and certainly not in the tennis world. As I said, I think the game is clearly in a great spot.
"That doesn't mean there's not always going to be some issues on the side. That's for me to listen. I heard the players loud and clear the other night about their issues.
"They're obviously a very, very important part of this organisation. As a former player, I hope I understand their issues as much as anyone.
"My plan is to represent their opinions wherever it needs to be represented and make sure they're heard."
Of the issues that were raised at the meeting, the two biggest grievances were the number of tournaments the players must play each year and the distribution of prize money at the four grand slam events.
As well as the possibility of a strike, some players, such as Russian Alex Bogomolov jr, have suggested that the formation of a players' union is now inevitable.
Drewett, who won two titles in 12 years on the men's tour, said he thought the ATP, despite also representing the tournaments, was best placed to act as advocate for the interests of the players.
"The players actually are owners of half this organisation. There's not too many other player and sports leagues that can say that," he said.
"Once again, no organisation, no structure in any company, not just the ATP, could ever say it's absolutely perfect. There are issues.
"I'm not saying there's not. But I believe, when you look at the last 20 plus years, that's a long time. Things have worked well."
Drewett did not discuss specific issues or the possibility of a strike, which looks like an increasingly remote prospect.
Former president of the players' council Ivan Ljubicic said he thought striking was never a real option.
"In my opinion, that was complete nonsense," the Croatian told thetennisspace.com. "Guys got hot, got excited, but fortunately there were some cool heads in there.
"It was never, in my opinion, (a possibility) that the players wouldn't play here, or anywhere else.
"That's not the way you get things done. I went through one war. I would rather talk than fight. I always think that's the best way to get things done."
Melbourne: The ATP is listening to players' grievances and is still the best body to represent their interests, the new chairman of the men's professional tennis tour said on Wednesday.