Two more top 10 players in the women’s field have decided to skip the US Open due to the spike in Covid-19 cases in the United States.
On Friday, world no 5 Elina Svitolina announced on Twitter that she will not be travelling for the American Slam.
“Considering all the aspects, I have decided not to play the US Open 2020,” Svitolina wrote in a statement.
“I want to thank the USTA, organisers and the WTA for giving the players a chance to play and the fans a chance to watch this great event. I understand and respect all the efforts they are putting to make it happen in a safe environment, but I still don’t feel comfortable to travel to the US without putting my team and myself at high risk.”
— Elina Svitolina (@ElinaSvitolina) August 7, 2020
Along with Svitolina, world no 7 Kiki Bertens of The Netherlands too has confirmed that she will miss the major that starts on August 31, along with the Western and Southern Open, which usually takes place in Cincinnati but has been shifted to New York this term.
“After long consideration I have decided not to go to the States for Cincinnati and the U.S. Open,” said wrote in a statement posted on Instagram.
“The situation around COVID-19 is still that worrying and the health of everyone and the control over this virus is priority. Our prime minister indicated yesterday that we should be quarantined for 14 days after coming back from the States. Of course we respect this as a team and this would disturb our preparation for my beloved clay court tournaments in Rome and Paris.”
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Na lang nadenken heb ik besloten niet naar Amerika te gaan voor de toernooien Cincinnati en Us open. De situatie rond COVID-19 is nog dusdanig zorgwekkend dat de gezondheid van iedereen voorop staat en de controle over dit virus uiteraard prioriteit heeft. Zo heeft onze premier gisteren ook aangegeven dat we na Amerika 2 weken in quarantaine zouden moeten. Uiteraard respecteren wij dit als team en zou dit de voorbereiding voor mijn geliefde gravel in Rome en Parijs in de weg zitten. Ik hoop dat de situatie snel een positieve wending zal krijgen en wens iedereen een goede gezondheid toe # after long consideration I have decided not to go to the states for Cincinnati and the Us open. The situation around COVID-19 is still that worrying and the health of everyone and the control over this virus is priority. Our prime minister indicated yesterday that we should be quarantined for 14 days after coming back from the states. Off course we respect this as a team and this would disturb our preparation for my beloved clay court tournaments in Rome and Paris. I hope the situation will soon take a positive turn and wish everyone good health. Take care!
The duo join world no 1 Ashleigh Barty, who last week confirmed that she will be skipping the US Open, on the absentee list.
Additionally, world no 2 Simona Halep has as good as confirmed that she will not be playing at the major.
“At the moment, I’m not going to the US Open,” she said before travelling to the Czech Republic for the Prague Open.
“It’s been a strange year, we have to get used to it. I really missed tennis, that’s why I signed up for the doubles event in Prague.”
Men’s world no 17 and the 2016 champion Stan Wawrinka has also confirmed that he is not willing to compete at the US Open this year.
“There is the health situation which is particular in New York. I did not want to go the US under these conditions,” the three-time Grand Slam champion told RTS.
“And the sequence of tournaments which follows after the US Open will be tough. Finally, there are all the uncertainties related to the quarantine issue. There are still many questions and doubts about the holding of the US Open.”
Following the US Open is the Rome Masters which starts on September 20, and then the French Open on September 27.
Murray, Clijsters get wildcards
Amidst the withdrawals, former world no 1s Andy Murray and Kim Clijsters have been handed wildcard entries for the US Open this year.
The injury-plagued Murray, who won the event in 2012, will be making his first Grand Slam appearance since the 2019 Australian Open. He’s currently ranked 129th in the world.
Meanwhile, 37-year-old Clijsters, a three-time winner of the event, will be playing in a major for the first time after coming out of retirement for the second time earlier this year.