Despite the growing number of positive cases of COVID-19, Tennis Australia’s management is optimistic. Everything seems to indicate that next year’s Australian Open can take place.
The city of Melbourne is in lockdown with over 8,000 positive cases. Tennis Australia has already defined some options in case the Grand Slam has to move from one city to another.
Five bio-safe bubbles will be created before the tournament so that players can avoid confinement measures.
The bio-bubble will be opened from December 1st so that players can go to prepare. The expectation is that players will not have to spend the mandatory 15-day quarantine in a hotel. The bio-bubble has all the security of hygiene.
The TA management team has planned 5 different possible scenarios, if it cannot be carried out, it will be played with a limited number of spectators.
It will be possible for 400,000 spectators to enter following strict social distancing measures. The strategy and plan to distribute the people are already designed.
Another possible scenario would be to broadcast only. Also, moving the event to another time of the year. The last scenario and the one that is expected to be the least possible, to cancel the event completely.
If the event needed to be rescheduled, it would be moved to March-April or September-October.
The TA has cash reserves of $80 million in case the tournament must be cancelled. Last year, the Australian Open generated $387 million for Melbourne’s economy.
Maybe now it will change its name to The Very Safe and Happy Slam.
For the time being, we can only hope that it will pass. It is no secret that this global pandemic has affected the entire population in every way. From individual freedoms, the economy, to recreational activities, and the labour sector.
Let’s hope that 2021 is much better and we can celebrate an Australian Open that makes us feel as happy as ever.
All players are prepared for any possible scenario. And with the TA’s great strategy, we know everything will go well.