New York, June 18 (IANS) Ten-time Grand Slam winner Dylan Alcott has slammed the US Open organisers for excluding wheelchair tennis players from this year's schedule. The US Open is set to be held as per its original schedule from August 31 to September 13 with restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic.
While there are no deductions in participation in the singles main-draw events, there will be no qualification tournaments and the men's and women's doubles are restricted to 32 teams each as opposed to the usual 64. Mixed doubles, junior tournaments and wheelchair tennis are omitted.
"Just got announced that the US Open will go ahead WITHOUT wheelchair tennis.. Players weren't consulted," Alcott tweeted. "I thought I did enough to qualify - 2x champion, number 1 in the world. But unfortunately I missed the only thing that mattered, being able to walk. Disgusting discrimination."
He added: "And please do not tell me I am a agreater risk' because I am disabled. I am disabled yes but that does not make me SICK. I am fitter and healthier than nearly everybody reading this right now. There are no added risks.
"And for sure there are far more important things going on in the world, but that choice shoulda¿ve been up TO ME. It is blatant discrimination for able bodied people to decide on my behalf what I do with my LIFE AND CAREER just because I am disabled. Not good enough."
Organisers said that the ommissions were made so as to restrict the number of people in the facilities. The matches will be conducted without fans.