IMG recently acquired the Mutua Madrid Open tennis tournament. The new owner IMG gave most cards to players on its roster, and not to many Spanish players as in the past. Only one player from Spain got a main draw wild card.
Spanish tennis star Fernando Verdasco expressed his frustration with the change. In a lengthy message Twitter post, Verdasco said:
We find it surprising, as well as very frustrating, that the biggest tennis event in Spain shows so little (or no) support towards Spanish tennis players with the invitations granted, especially for the main draws.
Their commercial interests take precedence over Spanish sport and deviate completely from the trajectory followed in previous years.
If we consider any other tournament in the same category, the support given to local players is immensely greater.
IMG takes a similar approach at the Miami Open which it owns. The tournament gives wild cards to players represented by IMG rather than American players. Italian Open which starts next week has given all five of its wild cards to Italian players.