Rafael Nadal to skip U.S. Open over coronavirus concerns

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Defending U.S. Open champion Rafael Nadal announced via Twitter on Tuesday that he will skip this year’s edition of the tournament due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The 34-year-old, who won his fourth U.S. Open in 2019, thanked tournament organizers and added he does not wish to travel amid the uncontrolled virus outbreak.

Nadal’s announcement comes as no surprise to those who have followed his feelings on the subject throughout the summer. In late June, Nadal’s uncle and former coach, Toni Nadal, told ESPN Deportes he wasn’t sure if the all-time great would participate in this year’s U.S. Open scheduled from Aug. 31 to Sept. 13 in New York.

Back in May, Nadal suggested he’d skip the remainder of the 2020 calendar and focus on 2021.

Ash Barty, the no. 1 ranked women’s player in the world, opted out of the U.S. Open last week.