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Eugène Lapierre Expects To See The Majority Of The Players!

The director of the National Bank in Montreal, Eugène Lapierre, during a press conference in 2017 at the IGA Stadium.

Tennis players who will participate in the National Bank Open next August will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Despite the reluctance of some stars to be inoculated, this decision by the Canadian government does not seem to worry Eugène Lapierre, the director of the Montreal tournament. In Canada, any athlete – professional or amateur – who is not vaccinated against COVID-19 will no longer be able to enter the country to compete in a competition as of January 15, recently informed the federal Minister of Public Safety, Marco. Mendicino.

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At a press conference on Tuesday, Tennis Canada President and CEO Michael Downey confirmed that the National Bank Open will surely be no exception, “but that the situation could still change by August. It’s hard to say nine months into the tournament which players who haven’t been inoculated might have to give up on participating. According to the American network CNN, in October, 30% of ATP and WTA athletes who appear in the world’s top 100 had not been adequately vaccinated. 

The two circuits did not respond to the Journal on Tuesday when contacted to find out if more recent data existed. But Craig Tiley, president of the Australian Tennis Federation, said last week that he expected 95% of players to be in time for the Australian Open, which will be held in January. 

The Vagueness Around “Djoko”

The organizers of the first Grand Slam round of the season have already announced that all athletes taking part in the tournament will need to be vaccinated against the virus. 

This decision calls in particular into question the participation of the reigning champion, the Serbian Novak Djokovic. The world number 1 has so far refused to say if he had been vaccinated. There has been a lot of speculation surrounding Novak,” Tiley said, in mid-November. He says his decision is a private matter. ” 

Hardheads

Eugène Lapierre was rather encouraged on Tuesday by the rapid increase in the vaccination rate among players. The Quebec metropolis will receive the best ATP snowshoes from August 5 to 14.  Maybe some will have a hard head until the end,” he noted. We will have a better idea of ​​who will be vaccinated during the Australian Open. I think the majority of the players will be there. 

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Besides Djokovic, Russian Daniil Medvedev and Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas recently expressed reluctance to be vaccinated against COVID-19. But the number 2 and 4 in the world have confirmed their participation in the Australian Open, suggesting they have been vaccinated or will be in time for the tournament. 

Eugenie Bouchard is not expected to return to competition at the Australian Open, the “aggressive” goal she set for herself in August, two and a half months after undergoing shoulder surgery. 

The Quebecer, injured in March in Monterrey, however, obtained the green light from the doctors on Monday to resume training on the ground. Australia, it seems too tight to me, raised Tuesday Sylvain Bruneau, the head of the women’s section at Tennis Canada. But I have spoken to him and the doctors are very satisfied with his rehabilitation. “

After these many weeks of inactivity, Eugenie fell back to 250th rank after successfully earlier this year to rise near the top 100. 

Fatigue

Bianca Andreescu (46th worldwide) will not in Melbourne for the first major of 2022. The Canadian announced Monday will take a break to relax. 

If Tennis Canada drew up a positive assessment of the performance of its players on Tuesday, especially in Grand Slam tournaments, the organization also noted some fatigue. 

The golf Leylah Fernandez (24th ) to the final of the US Open, and the presence in the semifinals of Felix Auger-Aliassime (11th in New York) and Denis Shapovalov (14th, at Wimbledon) were the highlights of the singles season. 

But besides Andreescu, Shapovalov also mentioned at the end of the year “needing rest”. Several players from other countries have said they are tired due to the restrictions surrounding the pandemic.

“Denis wanted to give himself time to get off to a good start because he maybe arrived a little burned out towards the end,” explained Guillaume Marx, Performance Manager at Tennis Canada. 

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