Halep has previously expressed concerns about playing in the US Open this year, and today’s announcement makes it seem even more unlikely that she will be in action at Flushing Meadows. Having already committed to playing on clay at the Palermo Open when the WTA Tour resumes on August 3rd, the Romanian will be playing on clay again the week after in Prague. It seems incredibly likely that she is focusing on her build-up to the rescheduled French Open in late September. Halep won the title at Roland Garros in 2018.
In a statement, the tournament said that they were “so looking forward,” to seeing the reigning Wimbledon champion in action, with Halep adding that she was looking forward to playing in “beautiful Prague.” It will be the Romanian’s first time at the event, which first held a WTA-level event in 2015.
Whilst Halep has not been seen on court much since Tennis was suspended due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Bouchard has recently been in action in the World Team Tennis event in West Virginia. A former world number five, the Canadian is now ranked outside of the top 300 and has been awarded a wildcard into the event.
“I want to thank the tournament for offering me a wildcard into this great event,” Bouchard commented. Her entrance is undoubtedly an interesting one, as it is unknown whether professional athletes can currently avoid quarantine restrictions currently in place throughout most of Europe for those arriving from America.
Though there has been no official confirmation it seems likely that several Czech players, including 2018 champion Petra Kvitova, will also be in action. The main draw of the tournament will begin on August 10th.