Three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray wasn't surprised when world No. 1 Ashleigh Barty announced she wouldn't be taking part in this year's US Open as the Briton expects more withdrawals from the event will follow.
Barty, who claimed her maiden Grand Slam title at the French Open last year, doesn't feel the United States are a safe place for tennis right now. "My team and I have decided that we won’t be travelling to the US for the Western and Southern Open and the US Open this year," Barty said in a statement.
"I love both events so it was a difficult decision but there are still significant risks involved due to Covid-19 and I don’t feel comfortable putting my team and I in that position." Murray, who claimed his maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open in 2012, says he has heard a few top players won't be playing at Flushing Meadows.
"I have heard some of the top male players aren’t going to play. I would expect that would be the case," Murray said after a doubles win with Lloyd Glaspool at the Battle of the Brits, as quoted on Metro UK.
"It’s everyone’s personal decision. If they don’t feel safe, and don’t feel comfortable, traveling and going there and putting themselves and their team at an increased risk, then it’s completely understandable.
"All of the players will have some reservations and it’s whether or not you feel comfortable taking that risk. "Like I said the other day, my feeling is once we are inside that bubble they created, we will be okay.
It’s more the international travel, and getting there which I will be a bit concerned about it."
Murray intends to play the US Open
Former world No. 1 Murray is set to return to Flushing Meadows for the first time since 2018 as he wants to play at the US Open "Yeah (I expect the US Open to go ahead as planned).
As it stands," Murray said, per Metro UK. "We have to try and prepare that way, we were saying four or five weeks ago, you know, we were pretty sceptical about it but mentally at some stage you need to start preparing and planning for that.
"My training this week, for example, during the event next week, I’m planning to try and be there in shape for the US Open."