No bio-bubble for Tata Open Maharashtra

Tata Open Maharashtra in Pune, Indiaโ€™s lone ATP 250 tournament, has returned to the tennis calendar in 2022 (Jan. 31 to Feb. 6) on the back of an assurance from government authorities to the ATP that there will be no forced quarantine of international arrivals.

The 2021 edition of the tournament was not held because the Maharashtra government was not agreeable to the above demand from the ATP.

Tournament Director Prashant Sutar toldย Sportstar onย Friday that players who are fully vaccinated will not be forced into quarantine and those who are not vaccinated will only need to take RT-PCR tests on arrival.

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โ€œThere will be no bio-bubble. If a player tests positive during the tournament, only that player will be isolated in his own hotel room and not the close contacts,โ€ Sutar said. โ€œBut there will be regular testing.โ€

This will align the tournament with the Premier League model where the bubble has been done away with keeping in mind the toll that it takes on playersโ€™ mental health.

Sutar also expressed confidence that there will not be any visa restrictions as travel into India had eased significantly.

โ€œThere will be a maximum of 500 spectators allowed per day and they have to be double-vaccinated. But there will be no player fan engagement,โ€ he added.

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