Dylan Alcott, Andy Lapthorne Rip US Open for Omitting Wheelchair Tennis Matches

Australia's Dylan Alcott makes a backhand return to Britain's Andy Lapthorne during the men's quad wheelchair singles final at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

Lee Jin-man/Associated Press

Dylan Alcott and Andy Lapthorne, the top two quad wheelchair tennis players in the world, lashed out at the United States Tennis Association for omitting wheelchair matches from this year’s U.S. Open. 

Alcott called the USTA’s decision “disgusting discrimination” in a thread on Twitter on Wednesday:

Dylan Alcott @DylanAlcott

Just got announced that the US Open will go ahead WITHOUT wheelchair tennis.. Players weren’t consulted. I thought I did enough to qualify – 2x champion, number 1 in the world. But unfortunately I missed the only thing that mattered, being able to walk. Disgusting discrimination

Dylan Alcott @DylanAlcott

And for sure there are far more important things going on in the world, but that choice should’ve been up TO ME. It is blatant discrimination for able bodied people to decide on my behalf what i do with my LIFE AND CAREER just because I am disabled. Not good enough @usopen

Lapthorne tweeted this is, “yet again another example of terrible leadership in the sport of tennis” and “if this isn’t changed I don’t know what to say other than discrimination!”

The USTA announced on Wednesday that the 2020 U.S. Open will be played at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York from Aug. 31-Sept. 13. 

In the announcement, though, it was revealed qualifying for singles and doubles, as well as tournaments in the mixed doubles, junior and wheelchair ranks, would not be included as part of the event. 

Two-time grand slam singles champion Gordon Reid wrote on Twitter, “wheelchair players have had ZERO communication or consultation from either the ITF or the Grand Slam around this decision.”

Lapthorne is the reigning U.S. Open wheelchair quad singles and doubles champion. He defeated Alcott 6-1, 6-0 in the final to win his second grand slam singles title. He and Alcott teamed up to beat Bryan Barten and David Wagner in the doubles final. 

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