27 June 2007

Marat Safin Cannot Afford The Food At Wimbledon

Marat Safin has won two grand-slams and was the top ranking tennis player for nine weeks in 2000. But the outspoken Safin is clear about one thing: he does not like playing at Wimbledon.

"I try not to overstay my welcome here," the former world number one told the Sovietsky Sport newspaper, calling Wimbledon his least favorite tournament. Players complain about a lot of things in the locker room but when it comes to speaking their mind to the press they always say how nice everything is."
Before his match against 279th ranked Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi (who is the first Pakistani player to make it out of the first round in over thirty years), Safin came close to one of those US Weekly patented "They're Just Like Us" moments. Safin echoed the sentiments of many visitors to London by complaining about the price of things.
"But how can it be nice if you can't even buy a normal meal with our daily allowances here. A plate of spaghetti cost $25, where else do you see such outrageous prices," he asked.
While Safin claims he can hardly afford a meal at Wimbledon, he's hardly like us. His career earnings amount to $13 million. The average visitor's to England has to be less than that. I appreciate Safin's sentiments - England is a damn expensive place! The idea that he hasn't become so jaded as to not care about what he spends on things is also appealing and rare in star athletes. But perhaps Marat just needs to phrase things a bit differently. Maybe it's that you can afford the food, but you just believe that the prices in town are unreasonably high. Doesn't that sound better?

You'd think Safin would spend less time whining about food, and more time preparing for his upcoming match. Speaking of the match against Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi, Safin admitted he didn't even know what he looked like.
"I guess he's playing pretty good tennis if he qualified, he won a three-set match today. So I guess tough opponent second round. We'll see how it's going to be."
Yes, we'll see Marat.

11 comments:

Marat's right... said...

First of all, he's hardly saying that he can't afford the meal. And second, what's wrong with a wealthy athlete talking about the FACT that food at sporting events is WAAAY over priced? He happens to be 100% right. I don't know what the food costs at Wimbledon, but I know I paid $25 last night for 2 bad heat-lamp hot dogs and two cans of Budweiser at Shea Stadium.

I also go to the US Open several times every year and they put you over the barrel worse than any event I've ever seen. Just because you have the money for expensive tickets or earn a lot as an athlete doesn't mean you can't complain about being ripped off when you want to eat.

If the food at these places were even slightly mediocre, most people probably wouldn't mind. But if I'm paying $5 for a hot dog, it should be a damn good hot dog. There's nothing wrong with feeling that way regardless of your tax bracket.

Anonymous said...

In general, Marat is a refreshingly outspoken, as well as entertaining in his interviews. I hate the cliches most of the tennis players throw at us. As for food prices, I understood it primarily as a humorous comment (they were seeking some kind of criticism of Wimbledon from him), which also addressed the issue an average visitor to Wimby agrees with.
If he is as slick on court on Friday, perhaps he'll bless us with wiping that smug smile of Federer's face ;)

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