‘Australian Open is in doubt – it’s too risky and complicated,’ says former Tennis Australia chief
The Australian Open is ‘in doubt’ according to former Tennis Australia chief Steve Healy, who believes there is no way to sufficiently reduce the health risks.
The coronavirus crisis has decimated the tennis schedules with Wimbledon cancelled and the French Open rescheduled for September.
The US Open, meanwhile, is currently being played in empty stadiums, leaving the Australian Open next in line to worry about logistics and safety.
“I think it’s in doubt, but I hope the sport doesn’t suffer if the Australian Open doesn’t run,” Healy told The Age.
“I can’t really imagine how you can get all the players in and quarantine them for a period, if that’s what they have to do, and keep them in the bubble and keep everybody safe – boy, that’s just so complicated and so risky.”
One possible solution that has been suggested is to move the tournament to a smaller venue but one that can offer greater levels of control.
That would not be Healy’s choice, but he says it should at least be considered.
“If you were to reduce the draws, perhaps you could probably run it in Sydney or in Brisbane,” he said.
“It’s very difficult but if there was a choice between not running it, and, for example, running in Sydney or Brisbane, you would absolutely try.”
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