A reconstructed 2020 season should be built around the Grand Slams and Premier tournaments, says Simona Halep.
The Wimbledon champion sat down with Hall of Famers Boris Becker and Mats Wilander and Indian Wells tournament director Tommy Haas for a Eurosport Tennis Legends videocast. Halep, who has been spending coronavirus lockdown at home, says WTA mandatory events and majors must be the focus of any reconstructed season.
“Well, if everything is safe and we are able to travel a 100 percent, I think that the priority has to be for the mandatory and Grand Slams, in my opinion,” Halep told the Eurosport team. “Even if they change the dates, I feel like it should be a priority for these big tournaments. Because actually they keep the Tour very strong, so I have the feeling that it is going to happen if everything is okay. Even if the dates are changed, in my opinion.”
The ATP and WTA jointly announced the continued suspension of both Tours until at least July 13th.
The coronavirus pandemic prompted Wimbledon to cancel for the first time in 75 years.
Roland Garros stunned many in the tennis world with its unilateral decision to move from its scheduled May start time to September 20th—one week after the US Open ends. The Flushing Meadows major is aiming to start main-draw play on August 31st.
Halep says tennis’ governing bodies and players must unify to make a collective decision on if and when to resume the season.
“I feel like the leaders of this tennis tour, they have to come together and also to ask the players because, in my opinion, we have a good word because we have to play,” Halep told Eurosport’s Tennis Legends. “And they have to decide what is best for everybody. Not just for the tournaments or for the players.”
Halep, who won her 20th career title in Dubai earlier this season, is hopeful the season will resume—and concerned if it does not.
“If this year it’s possible to play some tournaments it is going to be great,” Halep said. “Even if the dates will be changed pretty much and even if we will have clay or hard court [tournaments]. Grass, I know it’s impossible to have it anymore.
“But I feel like if we stay one year without a tournament it’s going to be much harder to start again next year.”