ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Opening Up Tennis

Lessons from the US Open

Opening Up Tennis

What was the silver lining to the COVID-19-ridden US Open last year?

If you followed the US Open 2020, you can attest to having witnessed arguably the most dramatic grand slam of recent years—the cherry on top being world number one in the men’s tour Novak Djokovic’s disqualification from the tournament for accidentally hitting a ball at a linesperson. Taking stock of the USTA’s (United States Tennis Association) decision to go ahead with the tournament, in the country which is worst hit by the pandemic, there have been hiccups and health scares, sadly, as expected. Though not to be measured to scale, the silver lining is quite difficult to not notice. The elephant in the room, the common good versus self-interest debate, came to the forefront as Benoît Paire tested positive for COVID-19 right before the tournament and was removed from the field. Players who had come in contact with him, including Kristina Mladenovic and Adrian Mannarino, were under constant supervision. Mladenovic, part of the number one seeded doubles team, was forced out of the Open even after multiple negative tests. As the USTA and players waddled through the ethically ambiguous terrain of last year’s US Open, I could not help but see the bright side, the silver lining.

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Updated On : 6th Feb, 2021

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