Top tennis players are beginning to join calls for the cancellation of the Tokyo Olympic Games, while some others are unsure of their participation.
This Summer Olympics, pushed forward from last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, is billed to hold between 23 July and 8 August, but there have been rising calls for its cancellation.
Tokyo is under a state of emergency amid a surge in cases of coronavirus, with 10 weeks left to the start of the rescheduled Games.
Japanese star, Naomi Osaka said the rising Covid-19 levels in Tokyo were a “big cause for concern” and that she was “not really sure” the Olympics should go ahead this summer.
“I’m an athlete, and of course my immediate thought is that I want to play in the Olympics.
“But as a human, I would say we’re in a pandemic, and if people aren’t healthy, and if they’re not feeling safe, then it’s definitely a really big cause for concern,” added the world no.2.
World number three Rafael Nadal said he does not know if he will compete at the summer Games because of the uncertainties.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion, who won Olympic gold in the singles in 2008 and the doubles in 2016, says he does not yet know his schedule.
“In a normal world I will never think about missing Olympics, of course,” the 34-year-old told a news conference.
“Under these circumstances, I don’t know.”
He added: “I need to organise my schedule.
“In a normal year, I normally know my schedule almost 100% since 1 January till the end of the season. This year is something a little bit different, no?
“We need to be flexible. We need to adapt about the things that are happening.”
His comments came barely 24 hours after American 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams raised doubts over her participation because she is hesitant to spend time away from her three-year-old daughter, Olympia.
Last week, over 200,000 Tokyo residents signed a petition against the hosting of the Olympics due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But the organizers have insisted that the events would go on as scheduled.
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