Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Wimbledon plans to allow some spectators this year

   Wimbledon plans to allow spectators at a minimum of 25 percent capacity this year, the All England Lawn Tennis Club announced today. 
   The tournament, which was canceled last year for the first time in 75 years because of the pandemic, is scheduled for June 28 to July 11. 
   The AELTC also announced that the traditional rest day on the middle Sunday will be eliminated beginning in 2022, the Centre Court centenary.  
   "Thanks to improved grass-court technology and maintenance over the past five years or so and other measures," AELTC chairman Ian Hewitt said in a statement, "we are comfortable that we are able to look after the courts, most particularly Centre Court, without a full day of rest.
   "This provides us with the opportunity, at an important time, to enhance the accessibility, reach and fan base of Wimbledon, and tennis, both in the UK and globally. It will also ensure greater resilience and fairness of the tournament program for our competitors, and enable us to create a different kind of atmosphere on the middle Sunday, with a strong focus on the local community in particular. ... "
   ATP Tour — Qualifier Mackenzie McDonald, a 26-year-old product of Piedmont, Calif., in the San Francisco Bay Area, beat sixth-seeded Dusan Lajovic of Serbia 6-4, 6-4 in the first round of the BMW Open on clay in Munich.
   McDonald, who's now based in Orlando, Fla., is scheduled to meet qualifier Ilya Ivashka of Belarus for the first time on Wednesday. Ivashka, 27, routed Emil Ruusuvuori of Finland 6-1, 6-2.
   The winner of the McDonald-Ivashka match likely will play top seed and two-time champion Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals.
   ATP Challenger Tour — In the first round of doubles, Andre Goransson (University of California, Berkeley, 2014-17) of Sweden and Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium edged fourth-seeded Robert Galloway of Greenville, S.C., and Alex Lawson of Tempe, Ariz., 6-2, 2-6 [11-9] in the €44,820 ($54,189) Rome Garden Open 2 on clay in Rome. 
   ITF Women's Tour — Second-seeded Maiar Sherif Ahmed Abdelaziz (Fresno State, 2015-16) of Egypt downed Emma Navarro, a 19-year-old wild card from Charleston, S.C., 6-4, 6-1 in the first round of the $60,000 Women's Pro Event at Boars Head Resort on clay in Charlottesville, Va.
   Navarro is a freshman at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.   
   Katie Volynets, a 19-year-old wild card from Walnut Creek in the Bay Area, outlasted Danielle Lao, only 5-foot-1 (1.59 meters) and 115 pounds (52.2 kilograms), of Arcadia in the Los Angeles area 6-2, 1-6, 6-4 in 2 hours, 52 minutes.
   Arina Rodionova of Australia ousted top-seeded Madison Brengle of Dover, Del., 7-5, 4-6, 6-5, retired. Brengle won Northern California Challengers in 2018 and 2019. Rodionova reached the quarterfinals of the $60,000 Berkeley (Calif.) Challenger in 2019.
   In the opening round of doubles, Kristie Ahn, a 28-year-old Stanford graduate from Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and Harriet Dart of Great Britain defeated U.S. wild cards Rasheeda McAdoo and Alycia Parks 6-4, 6-2.

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