Three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka confirmed Friday that he will not play the U.S. Open citing “the health situation in New York” as the tournament took another hit.
Wawrinka, the 2016 U.S. Open winner, was already missing from the entry list along with four-time champion Rafael Nadal. Now, the 35-year-old will instead focus on Roland Garros where he won his second career major in 2015.
“There is the health situation which is particular in New York. I did not want to go the US under these conditions,” the world number 17, told RTS in Switzerland.
Tight Schedule after US Open
Players at the U.S. Open, which starts on August 31, will be subject to tight health controls to avoid the spread of the coronavirus. It will also be played behind closed doors.
“And the sequence of tournaments which follows after the U.S. Open will be tough,” he added, referring to the Italian Open which starts a week after the conclusion of the New York event.
Roland Garros, delayed from May-June, will then start in Paris on September 27 following the US Open.
Wawrinka targeting Clay season
“Finally, there are all the uncertainties related to the quarantine issue. There are still many questions and doubts about the holding of the U.S. Open.”
Wawrinka played his last match on the 27th of February when he lost to Grigor Dimitrov 6-4 6-4 in the quarter in Acapulco. Stan Wawrinka’s best result of this season was reaching the semi-finals in Doha.
The Swiss will play two back-to-back challengers on clay in Prague from the 17th of August to the 30th.
Earlier Friday, top 10 women’s players Elina Svitolina and Kiki Bertens said they were skipping the U.S. Open. World number one Australian Ashleigh Barty has also opted not to play.