Dylan Alcott reveals how Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic & Andy Murray are helping wheelchair tennis
- Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic & Andy Murray have all reached out after Dylan Alcott's protest against the US Open.
- Alcott had earlier criticised the USTA for not consulting any player before cancelling the wheelchair events this year.
The United States Tennis Association (USTA) announced on Wednesday that the US Open would go ahead on schedule, after receiving appropriate permissions from the New York City government. But even as the likes of Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and other stars welcomed the news, some players got the short end of the stick and were left out in the cold.
The USTA has announced certain restrictions to battle the novel coronavirus outbreak as well as to lessen the financial losses set to be caused by the absence of stadium fans. That includes reduction in the number of events to be held at Flushing Meadows, as well as doing away with qualifiers.
One of the most significant events to be cut out is the wheelchair tournament, which is usually a mainstay of any Grand Slam. While men's and women's doubles will go on as originally scheduled, none of the wheelchair events will take place this year.
Not surprisingly, defending champion Dylan Alcott slammed the US Open yesterday for considering the disabled participants as dispensable - and for not even consulting them before making the announcement.
Since then, tennis fans and experts across the world have spoken out in defense of Alcott and other wheelchair players. And Alcott has revealed that many players, including the likes of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, have been trying to reach out and find out more about the USTA's unilateral decision.
Dylan Alcott receives support from Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray
Alcott made an appearance on the Today Show where he talked about the response he has received after his public criticism of the USTA. He also said that some giants of the sport - namely Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray - are doing their bit to help.
"I actually spoke to Andy Murray on the phone for 30 minutes last night, and he's publicly backed us, which is awesome," said Alcott. "I know a lot of the top players, the likes of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic are reaching out internally to try and help because they love wheelchair tennis and they support us as well."
Alcott further went on to say:
"I saw online some incredible support for what we're doing, which is nice. I was angry yesterday, but now I'm just really sad. You know how hard I train, and I just want to represent myself and my country, and do the very best that I can."
Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray are all considered terrific tennis ambassadors, and they have done a lot for the sport and their peers over the years. Their latest gesture is yet another in a long line of heartfelt acts, and is sure to give Alcott's protest a boost.Published 19 Jun 2020, 23:13 IST