World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who is also the President of the ATP Players Council, and some fellow players on the ATP Tour are reportedly not too happy about the exclusion of Guido Pella and Hugo Dellién from the Western & Southern Open tournament in New York due to the positive coronavirus test of their fitness coach.
Novak Djokovic and others trying to include Pella & Dellién in the draw
According to a report in the Spanish media outlet Marca, Novak Djokovic has started a process of collecting signatures from players to include both the players in the tournament, although it seems very unlikely that anything could be done about the same..
Both players have already announced that they are in quarantine and will not play the event. While Pella had an entry into the main draw, Dellién was scheduled to play in the qualifying draw which begins on Thursday.
The point of contention is that players think that Pella and Dellién should only have been excluded from the tournament if they had shared a room in New York with their fitness coach, which is not the case. Juan Manuel Galván, who trains both Pella and Dellién, was the first individual to test positive for coronavirus in the bubble set up by the USTA in New York.
Pella said the trio were in Miami last week, training for the return of the tennis circuit. The USTA had earlier this week announced that one person - a non-player - had tested positive out of the 1,400 COVID-19 tests done since last week.
On Wednesday, the USTA said that through contact tracing, it was determined that two players had been in close and prolonged contact with the person who tested positive and as a result, the two players had also been asked to isolate and would not play the Western & Southern Open.
While the ATP Tour did not name the players, Pella and Dellién posted an update on social media saying that they were in quarantine and would not play the tournament. They both still remain hopeful of competing at the US Open, which begins on August 31st in New York itself.
Novak Djokovic will be aiming to win his 18th Grand Slam title at the US Open - which would help him close the gap on rivals Roger Federer, who has 20 Slams, and Rafael Nadal, who has 19 Slams, in the race for most Grand Slam singles titles won in men's tennis history.