Roger Federer and Serena Williams are on the list of participants announced for the first Grand Slam of the year, which will take place from February 8 to 21.
Former world number 1 Roger Federer, whose participation in the Australian Open is uncertain, and Serena Williams, who will attempt to clinch a record 24th Grand Slam in Melbourne, are on the list of participants unveiled Thursday by the organizers of the tournament scheduled for February 8-21. In the first Grand Slam lift of the season, postponed for three weeks due to the pandemic, “our world number 1 (Australian) Ashleigh Barty will regain Grand Slam competition, like Roger Federer, who returns after a injury, ”tournament director Craig Tiley told the event site. Saturday, he had already assured that “all the best players in the world, including Roger Federer, had committed to come to Melbourne.”
Serena Williams still in search of a 24th title
Left off the courts for much of the 2020 season after undergoing two knee surgeries, Federer, 39, admitted in mid-December that he was uncertain whether he would participate in the Australian Open, even going as far as ‘to consider the end of his career. Also aged 39, “Serena (Williams) will try to win her eighth Australian Open title,” said Craig Tiley. Since her 2017 victory in Australia, the American has been chasing a 24th Grand Slam singles title, which would see her equal Margaret Court’s record. But she has not played an official match since her retirement in the second round of Roland-Garros at the end of September, due to an Achilles tendon injury.
The Australian Open was originally scheduled to start on January 18, but tennis organizers and governing bodies have had to postpone tournament dates at the request of Australian authorities to put in place unprecedented health measures to prevent the spread of the disease. Covid-19. Players will have to arrive in Australia from January 15 to observe a two-week quarantine period in a secure health bubble set up around Melbourne Park, the site of the tournament. They must therefore stay in hotels reserved for them and must not stay outside these hotels for more than five hours per day for their training. Qualifications for this first major tournament of the year will take place for men in Doha and for women in Dubai from January 10 to 13.