French Open: Roger Federer, Ashleigh Barty, Naomi Osaka among others miss out
- The tournament is being conducted with numerous health and safety regulations
- 20-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer will not play this year
- Ashleigh Barty,Naomi Osaka and Bianca Andreescu will also miss the tournament
The 124th edition of the French Open is currently underway at the Roland Garros compound in Paris, France. The tournament is being conducted amidst a pandemic, with limited exposure to fans and numerous health and safety regulations.
While big names like Serena Williams, Simona Halep, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic will tussle for a spot in the final in the respective Women’s and Men’s singles tournament, there are some who are missing out on the action.
A 20-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer and WTA ranked one Ashleigh Barty, who is also the defending champion of the tournament, pulled out of the tournament.
Federer decided not to play in the tournament as he is recuperating from a knee injury. Federer underwent two knee surgeries this year and is now on a road to recovery. The Swiss maestro won his solitary French Open in 2009, the year he completed the career grand slam.
Among other male tennis players giving the tournament a miss are Nick Kyrgios, Milos Raonic, Fernando Verdasco, Juan Martin Del Potro and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Kyrgios cited the coronavirus pandemic as his reason to give the French Open a miss. The reason behind Milos Raonic's decision to pull out the French Open at the last moment is unclear.
The curious case of Fernando Verdasco has baffled fans. The Spaniard tested positive for the coronavirus in August and had recovered from the disease by his own claim. Verdasco travelled to Paris for the French Open in September when he tested positive for coronavirus again.
Verdasco claims that he has since taken two PCR tests and a serology test on his own account, where he tested negative.
The Roland Garros organization, however, barred Verdasco from participating in the tournament. Following which he voiced his frustration and uploaded a note for his fans on his official Twitter account.
Both Del Porto and Tsonga have injuries that prevented them from participating in the clay-court tournament.
Amongst the Women’s singles tournament, WTA rank one holder Ashleigh Barty pulled out of the tournament citing adverse health conditions across the world.
Naomi Osaka, WTA rank three, pulled out of the tournament citing hamstring injury.
Bianca Andreescu, WTA rank seven, also decided against participating in the French Open and will skip the rest of the season as she is recovering from a knee injury.
WTA rank ten Belinda Bencic pulled out of the tournament following a right arm injury. Bencic recently competed in the Italian Open where she lost in the first round.
Chinese tennis player Wang Qiang, who holds the 32nd rank in the WTA rankings, withdrew her name from contention citing safety concerns.
With four of the top ten WTA ranking holders giving the French tournament a miss, the remaining players will fight tooth and nail to etch their names on the coveted French Open trophy.