Monday, Sep 28, 2020 | Last Update : 05:02 AM IST

188th Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra1339232103001535571 Andhra Pradesh6756746050905708 Tamil Nadu5808085251549313 Karnataka5755664622418582 Uttar Pradesh3870853258885594 Delhi2644502284365147 West Bengal2410592110204665 Odisha201059165432820 Telangana1858331544991100 Bihar175898161510881 Assam167374136712625 Kerala160935111327636 Gujarat1303911105923394 Rajasthan1247301042881412 Haryana1205781012731273 Madhya Pradesh117588932382152 Punjab107096840253134 Chhatisgarh9856566860777 Jharkhand7770964515661 Jammu and Kashmir69832495571105 Uttarakhand4533233642555 Goa3107125071386 Puducherry2548919781494 Tripura2412717464262 Himachal Pradesh136799526152 Chandigarh112128677145 Manipur9791760263 Arunachal Pradesh8649623014 Nagaland5768469311 Meghalaya5158334343 Sikkim2707199431 Mizoram178612880
  Sports   Tennis  21 Apr 2020  Coronavirus shutdown has exposed 'inequities' of tennis: Billie Jean King

Coronavirus shutdown has exposed 'inequities' of tennis: Billie Jean King

REUTERS
Published : Apr 21, 2020, 2:51 pm IST
Updated : Apr 21, 2020, 2:51 pm IST

The 12-time Grand Slam singles champion said the sport had the chance to emerge stronger from the health crisis

Billie Jean King urging people to wear masks during the virus shutdown. Twitter Photo
 Billie Jean King urging people to wear masks during the virus shutdown. Twitter Photo

Mumbai: Tennis great Billie Jean King says the financial fallout from the coronavirus shutdown has exposed the unfairness of the sport and that it is important for the top players to lead the cause for change.

The tennis season was suspended in March due to the Covid19 pandemic and the shutdown will continue at least until mid-July, depriving lower-level players, who depend solely on tournament winnings, of the chance to earn a living.

 

The sport’s governing bodies have joined forces to devise plans to provide relief and 12-time Grand Slam singles champion King said the sport had the chance to emerge stronger from the health crisis.

“This is a good time to reset and to have one voice in the sport, which we really never had. We need that desperately,” King told the Tennis Channel. “I hope they will all work together more after the COVID-19 situation calms down.

“Maybe someday, and I didn’t think it is possible, we might have a Commissioner. I don’t know. We are not the biggest sport in the world, we don’t have as much money as say soccer. So we need to stick together and everyone needs to help each other.

 

“The thing that’s also good is it shows the inequities that go on. So this is a good time to reset and think about how we want our sport to look in the future. What can we do to make it better, stronger and more secure?

“This is a really good chance to have a new normal for tennis.”

While tennis is a lucrative sport for those at the top, those in the lower echelons often struggle to make ends meet.

The men’s ATP, the WTA, which runs the women’s circuit, the world governing body International Tennis Federation and the organisers of the four Grand Slams have come together to work on creating an emergency relief fund.

World number one Novak Djokovic has said he had been in touch with fellow men’s Player Council members Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal and the players were looking to contribute collectively to assist those in the lower rankings.

 

King said the WTA was also working on ways to provide financial relief for its players.

“Some money has gone out to the players but we need to think about more,” said the 76-year-old American.

“The people who have to drive that are the top players. Because they have the big box, they have the money, it’s really important for them to step up.”

Tags: billie jean king, prize money, covid 19 lockdown
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)