Aus Open set for full program in 2021, including wheelchair events

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley on Friday said that the Australian Open Grand Slam is on track to proceed early next year and will include a full schedule of events.

“In terms of our plans for the Australian Open, as we’ve been saying for the past few weeks, we’re optimistic about having an AO in January with all the events and all the players,” Tiley said as per the Tennis Australia website.

He expressed the national body’s support for wheelchair tennis men’s number one, Dylan Alcott, who has slammed the US Open organisers for excluding his category.

The US Open is set to be held as per its original schedule from August 31 to September 13 with restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

While there are no deductions in participation in the singles main-draw events, there will be no qualification tournaments and the men’s and women’s doubles are restricted to 32 teams each as opposed to the usual 64. Mixed doubles, junior tournaments and wheelchair tennis are omitted.

“Dylan Alcott is a tremendous ambassador for tennis and has done a huge amount for our sport both here and around the world,” said Tiley.

“We understand how disappointed he is at not being able to compete at the US Open this year and we look forward to seeing him back on the court soon,” he added.

The Tennis Australia CEO, however, empathised with the United States Tennis Association.

“We empathise with our US Open counterparts who have put an enormous amount of work into staging their event during such difficult circumstances and in these unprecedented times,” he added.