Every ATP pro is particular about what he takes onto the court. Some want a specific number of water and juice bottles. Others want their racquets to be strung in a very precise way.
So far, so good.
But when the stars are in the players’ lounge and start thinking about what they could do off the court, they get a little more creative.
This year, there was one especially popular request: tickets to Coldplay at Bell Centre on Tuesday or Wednesday night.
“One word: Coldplay,” said Sophie Clermont, who oversees the players’ lounge. “I love them. I even went to the concert. But I can’t hear one more word about them! Everyone wants to see them. It’s insane.”
After the standard questions about the Wi-Fi password, the second most popular topic was the band.
“I told the players I would take down their names and see what I could do. But they still came to see me every day,” said Clermont. “Then I found out that I could only get five pairs for Tuesday night. I’m a teacher, so I did what I do with my students. I had over 25 players on the list, so I told everyone to write their name on a little piece of paper and put all the names in a bowl. That’s become one of my favourite memories of Rogers Cup.”
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) August 9, 2017
She put a sign on her office door that read Colplay draw @ 4 p.m. 5x 2 tickets. “Pierre-Hugues Herbert, who came to see me every day about Coldplay, arrived at 3:40 with his girlfriend and a huge smile on his face. I really wanted to draw his name! I swear that nothing was rigged but the fourth name that came out of the bowl was his. In the lounge, people were yelling and high fiving! It’s was crazy to see these athletes go back to being regular people for a little while,” laughed Clermont.
Unfortunately for Herbert, his excitement came to a screeching halt. Just 30 minutes later, he saw the draw: he was scheduled to play at 6:30 and couldn’t go to the concert. “He was on the verge of tears,” added Clermont. “I think he gave his tickets to his friend Lucas Pouille, whose name was also in the bowl.” In the end, Herbert paid a small fortune for tickets for Wednesday night.
“I’ve handled a lot of shows and concerts during Rogers Cup—like, Osheaga, The Weeknd and Muse—but never anything like Coldplay. I had never seen that type of reaction,” she said.
Let’s hope Coldplay doesn’t announce more dates in Montréal this week!