Tennis returns in three weeks and we are slowly hearing players make their decisions on participation. Both the WTA and ATP are trying to get the best players for the upcoming US part of the resuming calendar. But world number one Ash Barty dropped a bomb when she announced that she wouldn’t be participating in the US Open.
Barty‘s decision was influenced mainly by the pandemic. The US is still recording a high number of cases for the coronavirus. In her statement, she says she doesn’t want to risk herself as well as the health of her team. She is also yet to decide on traveling to the French Open to defend her title.
Barty’s compatriot John Millman has taken the opposite approach. In a recent interview with The Sydney Morning Herald, he said that although he has doubts about safety, he insists he has to play to help him financially.
“I definitely have my safety concerns and potentially there are a few more questions I’d like to be answered because a couple of the tennis players have shown they can’t really be trusted with a bit of their behavior,” Millman said.
“Look, my situation is probably slightly different to Ash. I probably need to start earning a living again, to be honest with you,” he added.
Millman is ranked 43rd and will take part in the US Open. He respects Barty’s decision and mentions that he did think it through. Eventually, tennis is an individual sport so decisions will also be exclusive to each player.
“I respect the decision that Ash made and it’s something that I’ve contemplated a lot, too. [But] tennis is an individual sport and we’re our own private contractors pretty much,” he said.
These are honest words from Millman. The major concern during the break was financials, especially for the lower-ranked players. And now, they will have no choice but to play to support themselves.
Source: Sydney Morning Herald