- Title: Tennis fans return to a U.S. Open with vaccine and mask rules
- Date: 30th August 2021
- Summary: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (AUGUST 30, 2021) (REUTERS) FANS ARRIVING TO BILLIE JEAN KING NATIONAL TENNIS CENTER WOMAN HOLDING EVENT PROGRAM VARIOUS OF FANS INSIDE THE TENNIS CENTER (SOUNDBITE) (English) ANDY GAVRIN, VISITING FROM PHILADELPHIA, SAYING: "It's incredible. It's really great to see the excitement and the energy back and yeah, hopefully we'll see some great tennis." (SOUNDBITE) (English) RACHEL GAVRIN, 12-YEARS-OLD, SAYING: "Just to watch the tennis. I've never been to something, like a sport really, so big before, and I'm really excited." (SOUNDBITE) (English) ANDY GAVRIN, VISITING FROM PHILADELPHIA, SAYING: "I am so thrilled that you needed a vaccine card to get in and we'll be wearing our masks when it's crowded. And yeah, I think it's what we should be doing." YOUNG WOMAN WALKING WITH A GIANT TENNIS BALL (SOUNDBITE) (English) SANDRA UNGER, VISITING FROM MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, SAYING: "I love tennis, I love the grounds, I love my brother, and we get to hang out here." (SOUNDBITE) (English) CRAIG MAYES, FROM NEW YORK, SAYING: "It's fantastic. We didn't stop playing tennis, but we don't play at this level. So we like to come and see if we can improve our game. But it feels great, great to see people back and it's just the energy of this place. It's is, a very happy place." (SOUNDBITE) (English) SANDRA UNGER, VISITING FROM MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, SAYING: "When we got our tickets, I just about cried just thinking about being back. But I feel outside, I feel safe and the vaccine thing was huge to feel like it's okay to be here." SANDRA AND CRAIG WALKING WOMAN SERVING WINE COUPLE POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS FAMILY POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS CROWD OF FEET GRAY FAMILY (SOUNDBITE) (English) RORY GRAY, VISITING FROM MARYLAND, SAYING: "My kids are tennis players. So they love the game. They've been playing for a while. And we just come as a family. It's good for the kids. And we can enjoy it. It's kind of like a mini vacation, I guess, in a sense." (SOUNDBITE) (English) CODY GRAY, 13-YEARS-OLD, SAYING: "I like meeting lots of people while playing. It's also fun to play." (SOUNDBITE) (English) COY GRAY, 11-YEARS-OLD, SAYING: "I just like how many people I get to see and like everybody's playing together." GRAY FAMILY SEATED OUTSIDE ARTHUR ASHE STADIUM (SOUNDBITE) (English) ROXY KROH, VISITING FROM PENNSYLVANIA, SAYING: "I hop around and see different ones. A couple of games here, a set there. But we'll spend a lot of time in Arthur Ashe too." EXTERIOR OF ARTHUR ASHE STADIUM US OPEN BANNERS VARIOUS OF WATER FOUNTAIN NYPD COUNTER-TERRORISM POLICE PEOPLE WALKING WITH THE UNISPHERE IN BACKGROUND PEOPLE HAVING TICKETS SCANNED PEOPLE WALKING INTO TENNIS CENTER
- Embargoed: 13th September 2021 19:30
- Keywords: Arthur Ashe stadium Billie Jean King National Tennis Center U.S. Open tennis
- Location: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES
- City: NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES
- Country: US
- Topics: Sport,Tennis,United States
- Reuters ID: LVA001ESH2W5B
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:The U.S. Open welcomed fans back for the first time since 2019 as Day One of the crown jewel of American tennis started in warm and sunny weather at Flushing Meadows on Monday (August 30).
Families and groups of friends were among the tennis fans to pack the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center one year after COVID-19 forced the tournament to proceed without an in-person audience.
This year, tennis fans 12 years or older will be required to show proof of a COVID-19 vaccine in order to attend the U.S. Open.
Fans at the U.S. Open said they were just happy to be back.
"It's incredible. It's really great to see the excitement and the energy back and yeah, hopefully we'll see some great tennis," said Andy Gavrin who came to the his daughter, Rachel.
Sandra Unger, from Minneapolis, came to the U.S. Open with her brother. "When we got our tickets, I just about cried just thinking about being back."
She added, "I feel safe and the vaccine thing was huge to feel like it's okay to be here."
Gavrin also said he appreciated the vaccine rule.
"I am so thrilled that you needed a vaccine card to get in and we'll be wearing our masks when it's crowded. And yeah, I think it's what we should be doing.
The USTA confirmed that the mandate does not apply to athletes competing in the tournament, some of whom have previously expressed reluctance to receive the shot.
(Production: Angela Moore, Andrew Hofstetter)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None