Wed, 23 Sep 2020

Karolina Pliskova eager to play US Open - report

08 Aug 2020, 06:12 GMT+10

World No 3 Karolina Pliskova said on Friday she was looking forward to playing at the US Open, bucking a wave of withdrawals due to coronavirus concerns.

"Even though I keep thinking the situation is changing every day, nobody knows what will come, but I really believe we will play," Pliskova told the Czech News Agency.

Her words are in stark contrast to a series of withdrawals from the tournament held in a country which has been hit the worst by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Top 10 players Elina Svitolina and Kiki Bertens on Friday became the latest to announce they were skipping the tournament, alongside number one Ashleigh Barty.

Four-time US Open champion Rafael Nadal is also staying at home.

But Pliskova has a special fondness for the New York event where she reached the final in 2016, her best Grand Slam result to date.

"The worst-case scenario would be if we left and they sent us back. We've already had this experience," said the 28-year-old Czech.

In March, Pliskova travelled to the United States only to find out the Miami and Indian Wells tournaments were scrapped over the virus outbreak.

She also waved aside the expected tight security measures at Flushing Meadows.

"I've decided I want to play and this shouldn't be a problem," said Pliskova, who even found an advantage to the planned restrictions.

"I'm pretty tired. So I'm looking forward to closing my door... and being alone in my room for 24 hours," she said.

Pliskova is skipping next week's WTA tournament in Prague, just like fellow Czech Karolina Muchova, the world number 26, who is also getting ready for a trip to New York.

"Considering the calendar, we have started training on a hardcourt ahead of the trip to America and a tournament on clay doesn't really fit the plan," Muchova said in a statement.

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