Bosses at the ATP Marseille event are poised to grab a vacant 2021 week as uncertainty over next season’s COVID-hit calendar deepens.
The indoor event is normally played in February. But with the Australian Open likely to take up most of that month due to a late (three-week) start, jockeying for the remaining positions could quickly become a free-for-all among up to a dozen desperate ATP and WTA tournament organisers.
TD Jean-François Caujolle is primed to move fast if necessary – especially with the prestige Indian Wells Masters in March heading towards almost certain cancellation due to logistics and the virus currently raging in California.
“The Open 13 Provence is likely to take place in March from the 8th to the 14th,” a statement read.
“Everything will depend on whether or not Indian Wells is maintained. The situation in California is worrying and the organisers do not know if the health situation will allow the Masters 1000 to be played.
“This (Marseille) 2021 edition will not take place under normal conditions, but we are fighting for its maintenance and hope to be able to offer entertainment and tennis, whether or not it is restricted.”
Marseille officials are hoping to slot into the week of March 8-14, normally the time when Indian Wells would kick off for men and women.
The fate of the less-prestigious Miami event – second half of the so-called “Sunshine Double” in the US – remains unclear.
When the American iteration of the pandemic was at a relatively low ebb, the US Open was able to be staged inside a bio-bubble in September,
But since then, the situation in the States has gotten much worse with a world-leading death toll approaching 300,000 and 15 million or so cases.
Main Photo:- Stefanos Tsitsipas winner of Open Provence 2020 ATP tour.com