Following Victoria Azarenka’s Withdrawal, WTA Event’s Championship Match Canceled Ahead of Australian Open 2021

Published 02/06/2021, 3:53 AM EST
A general view of Australian Open flags in Melbourne, Australia, January 20, 2021. REUTERS/Sandra Sanders


In this coronavirus pandemic period, the organizers of the Australian Open 2021 are having a hard time now. With a COVID-19 positive case delaying the schedule of various pre-events, it is now that the organizers have decided not to conduct the finals of the WTA Grampians Trophy, ahead of the Grand Slam.

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The final of the WTA Grampians Trophy, also known as WTA Melbourne 3, is canceled. The tournament featured the likes of Victoria Azarenka, Belinda Bencic, etc. But now because of the delayed schedule, the tournament final was canceled with semifinals still to play.

What will happen to players who are going to play in the semifinals of WTA Melbourne 3?

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The semifinals of the Grampians Trophy will be played tomorrow. And winners will be awarded the runner-up ranking points and prize money.

A man wearing a protective face mask walks past an Australian Open logo in Melbourne Park. REUTERS/Loren Elliott.

The quarterfinals were played today and featured former Grand Slam champs, Angelique Kerber and Victoria Azarenka. Azarenka was the favorite for the title but didn’t play her match. She retired because of a lower back injury.

Kerber was easily dispatched by in-form Maria Sakkari in straight sets. Sakkari will now play Anett Kontaveit in the semifinals. Whereas the other semifinal has Jennifer Brady against Ann Li.

The pre-events of the Australian Open 2021

Grampians Trophy is one of the six events simultaneously happening at Melbourne Park. Other than Grampians Trophy there are two other WTA tournaments, WTA Gippsland Trophy and Yarra Classic Valley. Then there are three other ATP events happening as well, the ATP Cup, Murray River Open, and Great Ocean Road Open.

Only the Grampians Trophy will end prematurely because of the tournament being behind the other tournaments.

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Craig Tiley, CEO of Tennis Australia, speaks to media during a press conference. REUTERS/Loren Elliott.

Earlier on Thursday, a security guard at the Australian Open quarantine hotel had tested positive for coronavirus. This prompted the Australian Open organizers to take safety actions and cancel all play on Friday. This also prompted testing for all players and officials.

The delay, for now, will not affect the Australian Open 2021. The WTA tournaments have been altered a bit by adding the last set match tiebreaker so that they finish early. Organizers are still confident of starting the Grand Slam on time with the desired capacity count.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1071 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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