Belgian tennis player Kirsten Flipkens says that it is absurd that the US Open should continue to be held in a message on her social media. Currently, the ATP & WTA Tours are set to return to action in early August. The ATP Tour will start in the United States with tournaments in Washington, Cincinnati and the US Open in New York and then move to Kitzbuhel, Madrid, Rome and Roland Garros in Paris.
After the positive cases of Novak Djokovic, Grigor Dimitrov, Borna Coric and Viktor Troicki, Flipkens says, “Is it just me or is it absurd that the US Open continue to be on the program? Players are testing positive at Covid-19.
So basically, if one of us were to test positive in New York, everyone else would have to spend two weeks in quarantine, right? Only in this case would they cancel the tournament, or what?"
Kirsten Flipkens on the US Open
While the US Open has implemented social distancing protocols at its event and the hotels, the situation of a player testing positive would surely have a big impact on the event and the resulting protocols for other players.
Although New York has seen tremendous improvement in its situation, the number of coronavirus cases has increased in several states in the United States over the past few days. The number of cases across the world has also been increasing and has now passed the 9.5 million mark with over 480,000 deaths.
The United States Open has been chronologically the fourth and final Grand Slam tournament of the year. The other three, in chronological order, are the Australian Open, the French Open, and Wimbledon. However, this year due to the global pandemic, the French Open has been moved to September and the Wimbledon Grand Slam has been cancelled.
The 2020 event is scheduled to be held without spectators due to the pandemic.There was also a controversy when it was announced that the wheelchair tennis competition would not be held, without USTA having consulted with the disabled athletes, as it had consulted with the player's bodies for the non-disabled competitions.
The USTA has now said that it would hold the wheelchair tennis event as well as part of the 2020 US Open. Several top players had earlier expressed their concerns about travelling to the United States in the current scenario.
Kirsten Flipkens has a career-high singles ranking of world No. 13, which she achieved in August 2013. She has won one WTA singles title, one WTA Challenger singles title and 5 WTA doubles titles and her best Grand Slam performance was at the 2013 Wimbledon Championships, where she reached the semifinal.