Rafael Nadal withdraws from US Open due to concerns about coronavirus: ‘We still have no control over it’
Defending champion Rafael Nadal will not play in the US Open due to concerns about the corona virus.
The number two in the world had long doubted whether he would travel to New York for a grand slam that will take place behind closed doors on August 31.
Nadal confirmed on Tuesday that he is not ready to play in Flushing Meadows, just hours after the announcement that the Madrid Open – to be held next month – had been canceled due to the global pandemic
“After many thoughts, I decided not to play this year’s US Open. The situation is very complicated worldwide, the COVID-19 cases are increasing, it seems we still have no control over it,” he tweeted . “We know that the reduced tennis calendar this year is barbaric after 4 months of no play, I understand and thank you for the effort they put in to make it happen. We have just seen Madrid not being played this year.
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This is a decision I never wanted to make, but I have decided to follow my heart this time and prefer not to travel for the time being. pic.twitter.com/8VA0aSACVy
– Rafa Nadal (@RafaelNadal) August 4, 2020
“All my respect for the USTA, the US Open organizers and the ATP for trying to put the event together for the players and fans around the world through TV.”
“This is a decision I never wanted to make, but I’ve decided to follow my heart this time, and I’d rather not travel for the time being.”
The legendary Spaniard’s decision to retire means he won’t match the record 20 Grand Slam titles for Roger Slam in New York, where the Swiss grand will also be absent after a season-ending knee surgery.
The number one of the women, Ash Barty, also withdrew from the US Open last week because she was unwilling to take the “significant risks” of going to the United States.
Novak Djokovic, at the top of the men’s rankings, is on the list of players because of his position, but also had doubts whether he would play before testing positive for COVID-19.
It remains to be seen whether Nadal will make the trip to Paris for the French Open, a major he has dominated that kicks off on September 27.