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Ruud rails at Paris Masters schedule as Sinner pulls out after late-night win

Organisers of the Paris Masters are facing heavy criticism over their scheduling after Jannik Sinner withdrew following a late-night finish.

The Italian fourth seed, one of the most in-form players in the world, did not conclude his second-round victory over Mackenzie McDonald until 2.37am on Thursday morning and was then scheduled to play Alex de Minaur at 5pm on the same day.

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Eighth-ranked Casper Ruud took to social media to criticise the scheduling, writing on X, formerly known as Twitter: “Bravo atptour way to help one of the best players in the world recover and be as ready as possible when he finished his previous match at 2:37 am this morning 14,5 hours to recover … what a joke.”

It was then confirmed about 90 minutes before the start of the match that Sinner, winner of two titles in his last three tournaments, including in Vienna last Sunday, had withdrawn citing fatigue.

“I am sorry to announce that I am withdrawing from today’s match in Bercy,” wrote Sinner on X. “I finished the match when it was almost 3 in the morning and didn’t go to bed until a few hours later. I had less than 12 hours to rest and prepare for the next game. I have to make the right decision for my health and my body. The weeks ahead with the ATP Finals at home and the Davis Cup will be very important, now I focus on preparing for these important events. See you in Turin! Forza!”

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De Minaur moves directly through to the quarter-finals, where he will take on the fifth seed, Andrey Rublev, who defeated Botic van de Zandschulp 6-3, 6-3.

Novak Djokovic stretched his winning streak to 15 matches and reached his ninth straight Paris Masters quarter-final with a 4-6 7-6(2) 6-4 win over Tallon Griekspoor, battling his way back from a set down and through a stomach issue.

Grigor Dimitrov continued his good form, beating Alexander Bublik 6-2, 6-2 but Roman Safiullin was unable to follow up his upset of Carlos Alcaraz, losing out 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 to fellow Russian Karen Khachanov.