Boris Becker believes the 2020 US Open shouldn’t be held in New York amid the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic. New…
Boris Becker believes the 2020 US Open shouldn’t be held in New York amid the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.
New York City is currently the epicentre of the virus in the United States, with part of the Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre converted into a temporary hospital to assist with the large number of patients suffering from COVID-19.
Becker says officials should consider cancelling the tournament or moving the US Open to another location.
“It’s the only Grand Slam still standing, but New York was pretty much the worst city hit by the virus a couple of weeks ago,” Becker told Laureus.com. “I don’t think it would be wise to have a tournament there.”
The US Open released an official statement on their website, stating that they are still planning to hold the tournament on its original dates of August 24 to September 13.
Furthermore, the USTA said moving the event to a different location was ‘not at the forefront’ of their plans at this point in time.
“We understand that there is a great deal of speculation regarding the USTA’s planning for the 2020 US Open,” the statement read.
“The USTA’s goal is to hold the 2020 US Open in New York on its currently scheduled dates. We would like to clarify that while we are exploring every possibility around the US Open, the potential to shift the event location or date is not at the forefront at this point in time.”
USTA chief Mike Dowse said earlier this month that playing the US Open without fans was a ‘highly unlikely scenario’, but the statement said that the tournament was starting to explore all possible avenues in order to hold the event.
“We recognise that we are all facing an uncertain and rapidly changing environment regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, and therefore have been aggressively modelling many other contingencies, including scenarios with no fans.”
All forms of professional tennis have been suspended until July 13 at the earliest, including Wimbledon, which was cancelled for the first time in 75 years.
Roland Garros made the controversial and unilateral call to move their slam to September, while the Coupe Rogers in Montreal – originally scheduled for August 7-16 – has been postponed to 2021 due to measures imposed by the Quebec government.