| By Long Island Tennis Magazine Staff
Photo courtesy of USTA/Andrew Ong

 

One of the concerns around the 2020 US Open would be the potential lack of star power that would travel to New York, but those doubts have been eased a bit this week.

During the US Open’s official press conference on Tuesday, Serena Williams joined in with a video message to announce her excitement that the Open will be played.

“I really cannot wait to return to New York and play the US Open 2020,” said Serena. “I feel like the USTA is going to do a really good join of ensuring everything is amazing and everything is perfect and everyone is safe. It’s going to be exciting.”

It was a big statement to be made as there had been reports of many top players, on both sides, not wanting to travel to New York, one of the hotspots of the COVID-19 pandemic.

But the safety protocols and precautions laid out by the USTA earlier this week gave confidence to many players, as did expanding the entourages that players are allowed to bring from one person to three people.

“I think that a lot of people were skeptical, especially for the US events considering what the US went through as a country during this pandemic. So a lot of people, including myself, were quite skeptical on whether it would happen or not,” said Djokovic. “We are very glad that it is happening, of course, and it is very important that we provide opportunities, we provide jobs, we provide opportunities for players to compete. Because at the end of the day, this is what we do. As tennis professionals, we love the sport. We are passionate about it. We miss competing and traveling and, at the end of the day, we miss being on tour. So, I think this is very positive news.”

That is not a full commitment by any means, but it is certainly more of an optimistic tone than what he had laid out previously.

It still remains to be seen what the stars on both tours will do in regards to the US Open, including defending champions Bianca Andreescu and Rafael Nadal.