August 30, 2020 9:48:42 pm
Benoit Paire tested positive for the coronavirus and was removed from the U.S. Open field, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Sunday.
The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because Paire’s status had not been announced by the U.S. Tennis Association.
The Grand Slam tournament begins Monday, with no spectators allowed as part of efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The 31-year-old Paire was seeded 17th and was supposed to face Kamil Majchrzak of Poland in the first round on Tuesday.
Contact tracing will now be used to determine who might have been exposed to Paire and needs to be quarantined.
His positive test was first reported by French newspaper L’Equipe.
The person who spoke to the AP said Paire’s result was the second that came back positive out of more than 7,000 tests for COVID-19 administered by the USTA so far as part of its ‘controlled environment’ for the U.S. Open and the Western & Southern Open.
That hard-court tournament, which ended Saturday, is normally held in Ohio but was moved to the U.S. Open’s site in Flushing Meadows this year.
On Aug. 20, the USTA announced one positive test but did not identify whose it was. Eventually, two players –Argentina’s Guido Pella and Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien — said their fitness trainer tested positive for COVID-19 and that is why they were dropped from the Western & Southern Open.
Paire stopped playing his opening match in the Western & Southern Open on Aug. 22 while trailing 6-1, 1-0 against Borna Coric.
Paire is ranked 22nd, owns three ATP titles and reached the fourth round of the U.S. Open in 2015, equaling his best showing at any Grand Slam tournament.
He lost in the second round in New York last year.
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