Kyrgios withdraws from US Open and slams selfish players

Nick Kyrgios will not take part in the 2020 US Open due to concerns over the public health risk posed by the event.

Kyrgios said that he didn't begrudge the organisers for staging the event and said he didn't have a problem with other players playing in the event.

Kyrgios withdraws from US Open

The Aussie firebrand issued a schathing criticism of irresponsible tennis professionals who don't seem to understand the gravity of the pandemic.

"I will not be playing this year at the US Open," Kyrgios said in a video message to fans which he put out on Sunday 2 August.
"It hurts me at my core not to be out there competing in one of the sport's greatest arenas, Arthur Ashe Stadium.
"But I'm sitting out for the people, for my Aussies, for the hundreds and thousands of Americans that have lost their lives, for all of you. It's my decision."

Kyrgios reiterated his calls for top tennis players to be role models during the pandemic. This comes after Kyrgios slammed Novak Djokovic for hosting an exhibition tournament in Serbia where health protocols were largely ignored. Kyrgios has copped flak for pubicly criticising so many top players, but for once the bad boy appears to be the voice of reason.

"Tennis players, you have to act in the interest of each other and work together," Kyrgios added.
"You can't be dancing on tables, money grabbing your way around Europe or trying to make a quick buck hosting an exhibition. That's just so selfish.
"Think of the other people for once, that is what this virus is about." 

Kyrgios' withdrawal follows on the heels of compatriot Ashley Barty also pulling out of the Grand Slam.

Tennis restart uncertain and staggered

As a global game with a hectic travelling schedule restarting the ATP and WTA tours is no simple task.

Next week the WTA tour will host the Palermo Ladies Open but this has not gone off without a hitch with an entered player testing positive for the virus during the qualifying for the event.

"In addition, all those who may have been in close contact with the individual are undergoing testing per WTA protocols," the women's tour added. "The 31st Palermo Ladies Open will continue as planned."

The vast majority of the field for both the qualifiers and the event proper are based in Europe which seems a more likely location for a restart that the United States.

Organisers of the US Open are hopeful of hosting warm-up events before the Grand Slam gets underway on 31 August.