Serena Williams at the US Open, September 5, 2019. - Anthony Behar / Sipa USA / SIPA
The American Tennis Federation, anxious to maintain the two most important tournaments of the summer threatened by the coronavirus, is thinking of playing the Cincinnati Masters 1000 at Flushing Meadows, just before the US Open, reports on Tuesday New York Times .
According to the daily, the USTA has communicated this proposal to the male ATP and female WTA circuits and is awaiting a response from them. An initiative to save the two most eagerly awaited hard summer events in North America, still kept on schedule despite the pandemic, which killed more than 105,000 people in the United States.
One month in New York to minimize travel
While the ATP and WTA seasons have still not resumed since their forced break in mid-March, the Masters 1000 of Cincinnati (Ohio), won last year by Daniil Medvedev, must take place from 16 to 23 August and the US Open from August 31 or September 13. The idea is that the two tournaments compete well on these dates, so over a month, at the Billie Jean King National Center in New York, to minimize travel and health risks for players, who would be subject to quarantine.
It remains to be seen whether these people, who for the vast majority returned to live in their country during the pandemic, and who would benefit from an authorization to enter the United States, would like to make the trip to New York, one of the epicenters of the coronavirus in the country.
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Questioned by the NY Times , the American player Bethanie Mattek-Sands approved the idea of a “double-header”, aiming to chain the two tournaments in the same place. "We are definitely on the right track because it makes it easier to have to control certain things," she said.
If they are not canceled - the USTA must communicate by the end of the month on the fate of the US Open - the two tournaments would probably be held behind closed doors. In the meantime, the season is suspended at least until the end of July, Wimbledon having been canceled and Roland-Garros having been postponed until the end of September.
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