US Open 2020 Lay Out Plans Including Charter Flights For Players And COVID-19 Tests

Published 05/31/2020, 5:26 AM EDT


The organizers of the US Open 2020 are finding every possible way to hold the event this year in wake of coronavirus pandemic. Moreover, the United States Tennis Association (USTA) is optimistic about organizing the tournament on its usual site and on its scheduled date.

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Charter planes to ferry players to the US Open, limited entourages, negative coronavirus tests before traveling, daily temperature checks, fewer line judges, no locker rooms, centralized housing, and no spectators. These are some of the scenarios that are being considered to stage the US Open 2020.

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“We continue to be150% focused on staging a safe environment for conducting a U.S. Open at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on our dates. It’s all I and our team wakes up thinking about,” the chief executive of USTA Stacey Allaster told Associated Press.

“There will be a combination of daily health questionnaires” – US Open organizers

“We are spending a lot of time and energy on all the models, including no fans on site. The government will help guide us,” Allaster added.

Allaster also revealed that there are no changes in scoring and it has hardly been discussed. “If the players came to us and said, ‘That is something we want to do,’ we would consider it. But we will not make a unilateral decision on that without player input,” she said.

Moreover, the players would have to test the negative of coronavirus before traveling to the USA. “Once they come into the ‘U.S. Open world. There will be a combination of daily health questionnaires, daily temperature checks, and some nasal or saliva or antibody testing,” she added.

Allaster also explained that there is a chance players from different cities around the world would be chartered to John F. Kennedy International Airport. In addition, the players might be taken to where they play the next tournament.

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The tournament could also provide physiotherapists so players do not bring their own physio. “A player coming with an entourage of five, six, seven, eight is not something that’s in the plan,” Allaster continued.

Also, the matches could use fewer line judges than usual. The current plan is to have them only adult ball persons and no ball kids.

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Should the USTA decide to go forward with the tournament, it will begin on its original start date of August 31. The final decision might come in mid-June.

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Varun Khanna

1313 articles

Starting off as a tennis author in 2018, Varun Khanna has gone on to contribute to EssentiallySports in various capacities. After setting up interviews with the likes of Serena Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou, Alizé Cornet, and Noah Rubin, Varun is now part of all major ATP and WTA press conferences and has gone on to pen more than 1300 articles for EssentiallySports. He now heads the tennis and NBA division of the organization.

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