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The masked mascot of the Winston-Salem Open greets seniors in line to pick up Renfro Nightingale masks earlier this week at Joel Coliseum. Volunteers were distributing masks to seniors at nine locations throughout the city.

While the ATP Tour has suspended the restart of its season until at least the first week of August, the 10th edition of the Winston-Salem Open remains on the schedule for Aug. 22-29.

Jeff Ryan, the executive director of the Open, wrote in an email this afternoon that there has been no change to the status of the ATP 250 tournament.

“Today's announcement does not impact us per se, however, we are now the focus or one of the few events of what could be the re-opening of tennis and the leadup to the 2020 U.S. Open,” Ryan wrote. 

Ryan, however, said it’s possible the Open, which is played at Wake Forest adjacent to BB&T Field, could be played without spectators during this COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are modeling fanless like the U.S. Open, but unlike the U.S. Open where they have in excess of $100 million in media rights deals, we don't have anything percentage-wise close to that, therefore our models yield different answers,” Ryan said.

The hope is that the Winston-Salem Open would be able to welcome fans.

The ATP’s announcement said the season could resume in Washington with the Citi Open Aug. 2-9. The Rogers Cup is scheduled for Aug. 10-16 in Toronto before the Western & Southern Open takes place Aug. 16-23 in Cincinnati.

The U.S. Open would then be played on schedule in New York after the Winston-Salem Open. Tennis.com reports that the USTA is considering holding the U.S. Open without fans.

“I applaud the USTA for doing what they are doing and their relentless pursuit to preserve the 2020 U.S. Open,” Ryan wrote. “As a former member of the leadership team, I know many of the folks up there and have enormous faith in them.”

The ATP’s website said the schedule could change again in four weeks.

“Tournaments taking place from August 1, 2020, onward are still planning to proceed," the website said. "A further update on the ATP Tour calendar is expected in mid-June.”

The ATP is also expected to decide what will happen with the U.S. Open by mid-June.

Andrea Gaudenzi, the ATP chairman, said on its website: "Just like tennis fans, players and tournament hosts all over the world, we share in the disappointment the Tour continues to be affected in this way.”

jdell@wsjournal.com

(336) 727-4081

@johndellWSJ

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