HomeHealth and WellnessAustralian Open Schedule Change As New Partner Signs Up

Australian Open Schedule Change As New Partner Signs Up

Australian Open Schedule Change As New Partner Signs Up

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ennis Australia has confirmed a new revised schedule for the lead-up events for the Australian Open (AO), in an effort to give players more time to prepare after strict 14-day COVID-19 quarantines.

With a total of 72 players in quarantine due to confirmed positive COVID-19 cases on chartered flights, Tennis Australia said the affected players will now have “the best possible preparation and training opportunities.”

As part of the changes, the two lead-up ATP 250 events will start one day later with increased singles main draw sizes of 56, while the ATP Cup has been postponed by one day, and a WTA 500 event will run from February 3 to February 7.

Tennis Australia CEO and Australian Open tournament director, Craig Tiley, said: “This has been a particularly challenging time for the athletes in hard lockdown and we, along with the WTA and ATP, aim to do everything we can to help.”

“These changes to the lead-in events have been made to give the 72 players a little bit of extra time to help them prepare,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Australian Open has announced a new partnership, with global brand, Initial, signing on as the official hygiene partner of the Grand Slam tournament.

As part of the deal, Initial will supply over 800 touchless hand sanitiser and disinfection wipe stations across the event precinct, as well as providing disinfection services of the 130 cars used to transfer players and officials to and from Melbourne Park.

Tennis Australia chief revenue and experiential officer, Ben Slack, said the partnership will help the Australian Open deliver its COVID-Safe plan with enhanced hygiene practices.

“The health and safety of fans, officials, players, and our AO workforce is our number one priority and to partner with a trusted brand in Initial will help ensure fans are protected and can play it safe while enjoying a day at the tennis,” Slack said.

“The hundreds of Initial touch-free hand sanitisers throughout the tournament precinct will be easily accessible to fans and will offer the best in hand hygiene protection,” he said.

Initial managing director of Pacific, Andrew Stone, said: “COVID-19 has had such a massive impact on life as we know it.”

“Sport, as part of the fabric of the Australian way of life, suffered substantially during 2020.

“As such, Initial is both delighted and honoured to play a part in supporting the return of an event as significant and great as the Australian Open,” Stone said.

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