There had been several reports circulating in the media claiming that due to the restrictions imposed in Victoria the delay to the Australian Open was inevitable
Novak Djokovic won his 8th Australian Open title in 2020. (AP Photo)
- The final dates for the first Grand Slam of 2021 has not yet been announced
- Earlier this week there were media reports speculating that it may have a delayed start in 2021
- The Australian Open is held in January every year
On Saturday, Tennis Australia dismissed media reports claiming that the start of the Australian Open is set to be pushed back from January to March next year due to Covid-19 protocols in the country.
There had been several reports circulating in the media claiming that due to the restrictions imposed in Victoria because of the rising coronavirus cases, the delay to the first Grand Slam of 2021 was inevitable.
“It’s pure speculation,” a Tennis Australia spokesperson said.
“Earlier in the week we… (said) how we continue to work closely with the Victorian government and we will update with more information as soon as possible, and there’s no update from that at the moment.”
The report quoted Victoria premier Daniel Andrews as saying he was “very confident” of hosting the Grand Slam but the exact timing and arrangements “are not settled yet”.
The Tennis Australia had planned for players and their entourages to arrive in Victoria in mid-December to have time to undertake a mandatory two-week quarantine period before competing in Melbourne in January.
Djokovic eager to see fans at Australian Open
Defending champion Novak Djokovic said that he would be extremely glad if Australian Open even allowed 10% of the stadiums to be filled up by fans.
“If Australia happens, I’m hearing that we are going to have at least 50% of the capacity of the stadium. That’s a lot, I think even 10% would be huge for us at this stage,” Djokovic said after moving into the semis of the ATP Finals in London.
“Just hearing the applause and hearing the fans and sensing their energy and their emotion and their kind of excitement for being there and cheering you on on the court, that’s something that I think we’re all missing.”
Rod Laver Arena is the biggest at Melbourne Park with a maximum capacity of 15,000 followed by Melbourne Arena (9,646) and Margaret Court Arena (7,500).