Cristian Gutiérrez about A1 and WPT: ”There is not so much difference in level”
Legend Cristian Gutiérrez has spent the last two years playing on the A1 Tour. In an interview with Spanish newspaper Marca, the player gives his thoughts on the tour level and his future.
Cristian Gutiérrez is one of the greatest players in the sport's history. Two years ago, he chose to leave the World Padel Tour to play at A1 Padel. Now, the player tells the story of the tour change:
— I chose to change because I felt that the other tour was already complicated for me mentally and on a competitive level. Many young guys started playing. It was tough for me. I think it was good to take a step aside to another tour, which is a bit lower level, but in the end, when you see the guys, they are not so far away," Gutiérrez tells Marca.
— It felt like a whole world away, but there's not much difference in the level. Now I hear that several World Padel Tour players want to start playing here, which means many things.
Gutiérrez also says that the best thing would be a world tour for everyone, but that it will be difficult to achieve:
— Ideally, it would be just one tour for everyone, but I can tell you that it's very complicated and almost impossible. In the end, it's two completely different owners who want to take padel to the top, which means that nobody wants to lower their expectations and tournament level to participate elsewhere. For the sponsors, for the people, this is one sport where there can't be two. Then, every tour forces you to sign an exclusivity contract because it's a lie that everyone is free. It isn't very easy.
Gutiérrez: "Today I have more fun"
Cristian Gutiérrez ends the interview by saying that he wants to play padel for many more years as long as his body lasts:
— My idea right now is to continue. I suffered a lot in the past because I had to win and reach the final. Today, I have more fun even if I play to win. In general, I have a better time. When you are younger, and they expect you to win, it is worse. Now I am more relaxed.