Rafael Nadal, the 2019 US Open men’s champion, won’t be defending his title in 2020.
Nadal announced on Tuesday that he has withdrawn from the 2020 US Open, citing his concerns with COVID-19.
After many thoughts I have decided not to play this year’s US Open. The situation is very complicated worldwide, the COVID-19 cases are increasing, it looks like we still don’t have control of it.
We know that the reduced tennis calendar is barbaric this year after 4 months stopped with no play, I understand and thank for the efforts they are putting in to make it happen. We have just seen the announcement of Madrid not being played this year.
All my respects to the USTA, the US Open organisers and the ATP for trying to put the event together for the players and the fans around the world through TV.
This is a decision I never wanted to take but I have decided to follow my heart this time and for the time being I rather not travel.
Nadal’s future schedule uncertain
Nadal’s schedule had just freed up with the cancellation of the Madrid Open on Tuesday. The end date of the US Open, which is scheduled for Aug. 31-Sept. 13, conflicted with the start of the Madrid Open, which had been rescheduled from the spring to September. Nadal was likely to compete in just one of those events. With the Madrid Open no longer happening, it would have given Nadal the opportunity to compete in the US Open.
However, Nadal’s concerns with COVID-19 overwhelm even his desire to compete. He would “rather not travel” to the tournament, though he said that he respects the USTA, the ATP and the US Open organizers for putting the tournament together amid COVID-19.
Nadal did not reveal his plans for the French Open, which is scheduled to start on Sept. 27. Since that takes place in France and not the United States, which is continuing to see high rates of COVID-19 infections and deaths, it’s possible that Nadal would choose to play in that tournament.
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