The WTA is adapting to the circumstances of the pandemic and their latest on-the-go decision is an addition of one more tournament ahead of the Australian Open, aimed exclusively at players in hard quarantine.
As you know, all players have been forced to quarantine upon their arrival in Australia, but 72 players are in strict lockdown, as they flew on the charter planes with people who tested positive for COVID-19. Some of those players who are not allowed to leave their Melbourne hotel rooms for 14 days complained about being underprivileged in their preparation for the Australian Open, so the WTA came up with a solution by introducing a new tournament just for them.
The extra WTA 500 event called the Grampians Trophy will run from February 3 to February 7 and will have a 28-player draw. This means that there will now be three Australian Open warm-up tournaments for the ladies. The Gippsland Trophy and the Yarra Valley Classic, the two WTA 500 events originally planned to run from January 31 to February 6, will have slightly reduced draw sizes.
This additional tournament will give players who have not been able to train outside of their hotel rooms a better opportunity to prepare for the Australian Open. Moreover, they will be prioritized for practice sessions, gym and ice baths. (source: WTA)
Wonderful innovative idea from the WTA
Can you stop saying “forced” into quarantine? You can just say they are in quarantine. You are making Australia sound like some sort of police state. What we are is a country that has chosen a particular approach which has resulted in one of the lowest death rates from COVID per head of population in the world. The players didn’t have to come here if they didn’t want to.
CLT, I’ll keep that in mind. My intention was definitely not to make Australia seem like a police state.