2021 Australian Open in doubt...


2021 Australian Open in doubt due to COVID-19

Phil Egan
Phil Egan

11:27 6 May 2020

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Next year’s Australian Open could be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Tennis Australia chief Craig Tiley.

This year's Wimbledon has already been cancelled for the first time since the second world war due to the coronavirus.

The French Open has been rescheduled to later in the year while the fate of the US Open is expected to be decided next month.

Tennis Australia Chief Executive Tiley said next year’s Australian Open would not escape the impact of the pandemic.

"Worst case scenario is no AO (Australian Open)," Tiley told the Australian Associated Press.

"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.

"There’s four scenarios and we’ve modelled everything. 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 (from).

"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."

Australia has had less than 7,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and as a result 96 people have died from the virus.

Both the ATP Tour and the WTA have suspended all tournaments at least until mid-July after countries started locking down borders to contain the spread of the virus.

Rafa Nadal admitted earlier this week that he does not expect to play competitive tennis until next year and the Spaniard also said he was "worried about the (2021) Australian Open" and that "2020 is practically lost."

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ATP Australian Open Craig Tiley Rafa Nadal Tennis Tennis Australia WTA

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