France’s Alize Cornet on Tuesday made stunning claims, saying that players at the 2022 French Open contracted Covid-19 but did not make it public and there was an understanding among them not to self-test in spite of having symptoms.
The 2021 Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini and the 2017 finalist Marin Cilic pulled out of the 2022 Championships after testing positive for Covid-19 ahead of their singles matches.
Barbora Krejcikova and Marie Bouzkova had withdrawn from the recent French Open after testing positive for Covid-19.
“At some point… we all might have had the flu,” former world number 11 Cornet was quoted as saying, according to French daily L’Equipe.
“At Roland Garros, yes, I think there have been a few cases and it’s a tacit agreement between us. We are not going to self-test to get into trouble. Afterwards, I saw girls wearing masks, maybe because they knew and didn’t want to pass on.”
Wimbledon organisers the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC) have not put Covid-19 restrictions in place for the 2022 edition. Moreover, vaccination and testing are not mandatory for players to compete.
Cornet added that she fears the health regulations might change at Wimbledon after the Covid-19 cases of Berrettini and Cilic. “Regulations might change following the Berrettini and Cilic cases,” she said.
Meanwhile, the 2022 French Open finalist Coco Gauff said that she was comfortable with getting tested at the grasscourt Grand Slam.
“I think for the most part, I feel like it’s okay that players are doing it themselves,” Gauff said. “That’s, like, the regulations in the government now, if you feel symptoms, test.
“That’s what I would do if I felt any Covid symptoms, I would test. I think it’s also good that we don’t have to test every day or every other day. I don’t want to go back to that. Not being scared to be tested, but it’s also, like, a hassle.
“I think with the vaccines and everything, we kind of know that the viral load is low and it’s very hard to transfer if you’re a vaccinated individual. I would encourage everybody if you’re feeling symptoms to test.”