Next year’s Australian Open has been planned by the organizing committee as Coronavirus has affected tennis a lot just like other sports. Tennis Australia chief executive Craig Tiley confirmed in a telephonic interview to Apnews that first grand slam of 2021 would be played under bio-security environment for all including few spectators at the Melbourne.
Chief also confirmed that overseas supporters and fans of Aus Open will not be allowed to catch live action from the ground. Only New Zealanders can be permitted to travel Melbourne if NZ removes the border restrictions.
“We made that decision this week, to go with that scenario from a number of options. We will not hit the numbers we had last year, a record 821,000 through the gates. Our fans will be from Melbourne and Victoria state, interstate, as well as potentially New Zealanders, if they lift border restrictions. But the 15% we get from overseas will likely not be here,” Craig Tiley told AP News.
This year COVID-19 forced many sporting tournaments to get postponed or cancelled including tennis grand slams like Wimbledon, US Open and French Open. However U.S. Open and Roland Garros events set to be played in August-September under certain restrictions. So tennis chief believes that these two major grand slams outcome will be helpful for Melbourne event as well.
“They are both exploring mandatory testing, varying levels of quarantine and limited entourages. Of course we are looking at all these options, and more, as part of our scenario planning. If conditions improve and the U.S. Open and French Open goes well and they have positive events, it will build the confidence of the players and help us here in Melbourne next year,” he added.
(With inputs from AP News)