French tennis star Adrian Mannarino explained how health officials in New York tried to stop him from playing his US Open third round clash on Friday. Mannarino was in close contact with Benoit Paire, who a week ago tested positive for the coronavirus.
The Frenchman was eventually allowed to play his third round clash against Alexander Zverev but it was already delayed for hours. No. 5 seed Zverev won 6-7 (4) 6-4 6-2 6-2 but Mannarino was happy that he was able to play.
The Frenchman now must quarantine in his hotel room until next Friday. "I was preparing to go on court at 2.30pm," Mannarino said, per Sky Sports. "The tour manager came to talk to me and explained the situation that the state department of health took over the city.
"The city allowed me to play on Sunday but the state took over this decision to say that I've been exposed to a positive case so I should be quarantined in my room and not be able to go on the court and play my match today.
"They told me they were trying to contact some guys and see if this decision could be changed. Obviously a lot of effort has been done, they pushed the match back, Sascha agreed which is nice. "They told me they would look at the situation try to see if we could get on court today.
Obviously they did. "I'm thankful to all these people who have been trying to get me on court today. Around 4.30pm I heard that I have been allowed to go on court. Unfortunately I lost the match but I'm happy I was on court."
Mannarino eventually received the green light to play
Zverev was told the chances of him playing Mannarino were slim but he stayed focused and eventually the Frenchman was allowed to enter the court. "I was told that there was very little chance we were going to play," Zverev said.
"They said there was a chance at 5pm, but I was just waiting around and seeing, I was relaxed. "For me as a player I am happy that he was able to play. At the beginning I was a little bit cold. We were supposed to play during the warmest part of the day when balls were going to be flying, then we basically played a night match.
It was different. "It was back and forth, back and forth. It was political, it was not us players, we were just sitting around."