Players vented, and vented some more, at Wimbledon on Tuesday

Djokovic: It was a wrong decision not to play us (2:55)

Novak Djokovic reaches the Wimbledon quarter-finals after a straight-set victory over France's Adrian Mannarino. (2:55)

LONDON -- There was something in the air Tuesday at the All England Club, and it had nothing to do with the pervasive rain that eventually wiped out all play on the outer courts.

A handful of players vented about various controversial topics during their news conferences. Here is a breakdown:


Monday's play on Court 1 extended deep into the evening, no thanks to the 4-hour, 48-minute Gilles Muller-Rafael Nadal marathon. Novak Djokovic was scheduled to play his fourth-round match against Adrian Mannarino immediately afterward, but they were unable to because of the lack of daylight. Djokovic played his match Tuesday and won, but he'll have 24 hours less rest than the seven other men's quarterfinalists.

Djokovic said: "We spoke with the referee, supervisors, trying to understand the thought process that they are having. I just think it was a wrong decision not to play us last night, because we could have played. I think the last match on the Centre Court was done before 7 p.m. [local time]. Having in mind that Centre Court has the roof and lights, we could have played 'til 11.

"We went to the referee's office before 8. There was security reasons. That was the only excuse, that basically there were explanations that we were getting."

Mannarino said: "Well, I think there were lot of issues, especially with the security and everything. I was not controlling anything, you know. We've been moved to the Centre Court basically, but we had to wait I think to the end of the match of Rafa.

"Yeah, it was a long day. Was not easy to handle everything because, I mean, when Muller won the second set, I was ready to go on court already. Then we've been waiting a lot."

Legit beef? "Yes. Even Andre [Agassi] was fighting for Djokovic. No idea why they didn't move that match. There was plenty of time, and it would have given Djokovic equal rest." -- ESPN tennis analyst Brad Gilbert

Court conditions

This has been an issue from the start of the fortnight. Hot, dry conditions created a slick surface. Players were falling left and right, most notably Bethanie Mattek-Sands, who was taken off the court on a stretcher. On Tuesday, Djokovic was not fond of the surface either.

Djokovic said: "I mean, I'm not the only one who has been complaining a little bit about this condition of the court. But at the end of the day, it is what it is. You have to accept it. You have to deal with it. It's the same for both players.

"The fact is that, you know, the court is not in a great condition. But, you know, as I said, you have to deal with it. I don't think much can be done and what can be done. As I said, that's not in my area of understanding and competence.

"The chair umpire in the end of the match asked me about the hole, because midway through the match I mentioned there is a hole. He wanted me to show him, so I showed him. His reaction wasn't that great."

Mannarino said: "I mean, I was a little bit -- to me, it was quite strange in the beginning of the match, because I felt like I was running in a different way. I was watching out my step all the time when I had to slow down."

Legit beef? "Hard to say just from watching, but to me, it looks like Centre Court is in better condition than it ever has been. But Djokovic is feeling any inconsistencies from the bottom of his shoes, so he'd know better." -- Gilbert

Fifth-set rule

The Nadal-Muller match was just the latest example of lengthy overtime tennis. Wimbledon, like the Australian and French Opens, has no fifth-set tiebreaker in the final set. Instead, the competitors play and play and ... play. Muller and Nadal went to 15-13 in the fifth Monday, and we all remember the John Isner-Nicolas Mahut battle that ended 70-68 six years ago here. But the ramifications aren't always fair to them or other players. Just ask Djokovic and Mannarino, who would have gotten on the court a day earlier had Wimbledon instituted a final-set tiebreaker.

Djokovic said: "I just don't see any reason why [there is not a fifth-set tiebreaker]. Because Isner and Mahut made a history with an 11-hour match once. Is that a reason why we're keeping it?

"Yeah, it is great drama. But that player has to go out tomorrow. It is for a spectator. But for a player to play a five- or six-hour match, then come back the next day or within two days and perform, it's not really what your body's looking for, to be honest."

Legit beef? "Yes, but I'd like to see some kind of cutoff point, whether it's 9-all or 10-all. No higher than 12-all. But if they want a tiebreaker at 6-all, that's fine, too. But Djokovic is right in that it creates an unfairness to the winning player, as well as the matches that follow that are postponed." -- Gilbert

On-court coaching

Coaches are allowed to talk to their players during WTA-sanctioned events. But Wimbledon, like the other three Slams, is not a WTA event, hence no coaching is allowed. However, Svetlana Kuznetsova wasn't so sure something nefarious wasn't going on in the stands with her quarterfinal opponent, Garbine Muguruza, and the Spaniard's coach. Earlier in the tournament, BBC commentator Kim Clijsters said she spotted some gestures between Victoria Azarenka and her coach, Michael Joyce.

Kuznetsova said: "Well, I could hear [the coaching from the stands] because it was pretty clear because we all speak Spanish here. She was talking to her all the time. But it's her physio. I mean, I know she acts like this all the time. I know that. I don't think it's appropriate, but OK, I was focused on my game."

Muguruza said: "Honestly, they were just cheering for me. I like when my team is behind me. But nothing really tactical or specific."

Legit beef? "I don't know what was said out there, but I would advocate for on-court coaching and eliminate any controversy at all." -- Gilbert