Former World No. 1 in doubles Pam Shriver says it is very soon to comment on the USTA's decision to hold the US Open in August and which players would show up at the tournament because the situation is very fluid and can change by the time the tournament is to be held.
Pam Shriver on the US Open and the players decision to play
In an interview to the TennisNow website, Shriver says, "I think it’s a little soon to say because of what’s happening in the U.S. right now. I’ve thought a lot about if I was a player based in Europe or Australia or Asia how would I feel with that big international trip flying into New York City? Obviously, New York went through the worst and from what I can understand they’re holding their own during this difficult part of the first wave compared to other parts of the country.
But you can’t feel confident about flying into the United States right now.. So I’m just saying that things can change. It depends on the tightness of the bubble. How confident players feel that the bubble will be honored."
The American, who is one of the all-time greats in doubles, is now a tennis expert for ESPN but says she is not sure if she will travel to New York to cover the US Open due to her own personal family situation. "At this point, I’m not prepared to say either way.
Because I haven’t had that conversation with ESPN yet. I will tell you certain things go into my consideration—and I don’t think it’s that different from players. One of my three children has type one diabetes, so that’s an auto-immune.
My kids’ dad, even though we’re divorced, he’s in my bubble. He is in our quarantine bubble, so to speak. He’s over 80 so he’s at risk. I’m a single mom of three high school kids. We don’t know what the return to school is going to look like."
Shriver says she also supports the idea of the merger between the ATP & WTA Tours which has come up in recent times. "I definitely think it should happen. It had some momentum earlier. In so many ways it makes good business sense.
It would totally change the political power structure of the game. It would make the players a much more formidable group if they’re together. So when I look at all the reasons why the ATP would want to partner with the WTA, you’d want a partner in your industry that’s the best, that’s number one in the world.
But I don’t have to deal with the politics. I just look at it from a practical business standpoint. It makes total sense." Pam Shriver won 133 titles, including 21 women's singles titles, 111 women's doubles titles, and one mixed doubles title in her career.
In Grand Slams, she won 21 doubles titles and one mixed doubles title and also won the women's doubles gold medal at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul with Zina Garrison as her partner.