#Novak Djokovic confirms he’ll play in 2020 US Open

#Novak Djokovic confirms he’ll play in 2020 US Open

August 13, 2020 | 9:39am

Novak Djokovic confirmed Thursday he will compete at the US Open in Flushing this month.

“I am happy to confirm that I will participate at the Western & Southern Open and US Open this year,” the world No. 1 said in a statement. “It was not an easy decision to make with all the obstacles and challenges on many sides, but the prospect of competing again makes me really excited.

“During my career, I have played some of my best matches at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. I am aware that this time around it will be very different with all the protocols and safety measures that are put in place to protect players and people of NY. Nevertheless, I have trained hard with my team and got my body in shape so I am ready to adapt to new conditions. I’ve done all the check-ups to make sure I am fully recovered and I am ready to get back on court fully committed to playing my best tennis.”

The 33-year-old is expected to arrive in New York by Aug. 15. He will also play in the Western and Southern Open, which is taking place at Flushing Meadows from Aug. 22-28, while the U.S. Open is set to begin Aug. 31. Both tournaments will not have fans in attendance due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Djokovic will be competing for his 18th Grand Slam title, but in a field without defending champion Rafael Nadal or five-time US Open champion Roger Federer. Earlier this month, Nadal announced he would skip the Open over concerns about the pandemic. Federer needed knee surgery and is done for the year.

It will be the first Grand Slam event since the 1999 U.S. Open that won’t feature Nadal or Federer.

Djokovic will be the No. 1 seed for the Western and Southern, which was moved to New York from Cincinnati this year.

The US Open, which Djokovic has won three times (2011, 2015, 2018), is expected to go until Sept. 13.

Djokovic and his wife, Jelena, tested positive for COVID-19 in June after Djokovic played in the Adria Tour, which he helped plan. The tournament was eventually canceled after multiple players tested positive. The two have since recovered.

“I respect and appreciate everyone taking time, effort, and energy to organize these two events for the tennis players to be able to go back to their working field,” he said. “Unfortunately for the players and the game itself, the current situation is not allowing everyone to travel and compete at the same level of risk, and I hope the situation will change soon and we will all be back to doing what we love and do best.”

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