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Australian Open 2021 at risk due to COVID-19 pandemic, feels tournament director Craig Tiley

While USTA is slated to announce their view on going ahead with US Open in 2020 next month, Tennis Australia Chief Executive Tiley feels that the pandemic might affect the first grand slam of next year. 

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Published on: May 06, 2020 17:28 IST
Novak Djokovic in action during Australian Open 2020
Image Source : AP

Novak Djokovic in action during Australian Open 2020

Even though USTA seem confident of going ahead with US Open in 2020, despite the cancellation of the 134th edition of Wimbledon Championships and the twice postponement of the French Open, on the contrary, the tournament director of Australian Open reckons that the 2021 edition might be cancelled owing to the coronavirus pandemic. Craig Tiley said on Wednesday further admitted that he doesn't foresee crowds of fans even if they go ahead with the tournament next year. 

March was the last when a professional tennis match was played. Since then, Wimbledon was cancelled for the first time since 1945 while the French Open was postponed until late September, while WTA and ATP held off all tours until July. 

While USTA is slated to announce their view on going ahead with US Open in 2020 next month, Tennis Australia Chief Executive Tiley feels that the pandemic might affect the first grand slam of next year. 

“Our best-case scenario at this point is having an AO with players that we can get in here with quarantining techniques and Australian-only fans.”

Tiley, like most other tennis players, also reckons that the remainder of the season might be called off as well.

“There’s four scenarios and we’ve modelled everything,” he said on Wednesday. “We’ve modelled the times we have to make decisions, dates we have to make decisions, who it impacts, how it’s going to impact them.

“We’ve done that for 670 staff. We’ve done that for all of our partners — our media partners, our sponsors and for all the governments and places we rent facilities.

“And now we’re working on the international playing group and getting them to understand what each of those scenarios are and what it means for them and how we can action it.”

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