Ash Barty at centre of major announcement for 2022 tennis summer

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·Sports Editor
·3-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Ash Barty, pictured here after winning the Adelaide International in 2020.
Ash Barty won the Adelaide International ahead of the Australian Open in 2020. (Photo by Mark Brake/Getty Images)

The South Australian government has announced the Adelaide International will return to its traditional timeslot before the Australian Open in 2022.

The 2021 event was held after the Australian Open in March as the coronavirus pandemic continued to wreak havoc with the tennis calendar.

'HARD TO CONTINUE': Glaring issue exposed in Novak Djokovic saga

'DANGEROUS WATERS': Uproar over 'disturbing' detail in Peng Shuai video

But SA Premier Steven Marshall announced on Monday that the Adelaide International, as well as one other event, will take place in the state's capital in early January 2022 before the Australian Open.

"Adelaide will host some of the biggest tennis stars in the lead up to the Australian Open," Marshall tweeted.

"Two tournaments including the Adelaide International will be held at Memorial Drive from 2-15 Jan."

World No.1 Ash Barty has played the Adelaide International the past two years, winning the event in 2020.

She looks likely to do the same in 2022 in preparation for a tilt at her maiden Australian Open title.

All the warm-up event for this year's Australian Open were held at Melbourne Park after players emerged from a fortnight in quarantine.

However Tennis Australia has said the build-up to 2022's season-opening grand slam will look "as close to pre-pandemic conditions" as possible.

Sydney is also in line to host events, including the ATP Cup, but it's unclear if Brisbane will host any tournaments.

Perth, with its state border still closed, and Tasmania, which usually hosts the Hobart International women's event, are off the program in 2022.

Players vaccinated against Covid-19 will be able play at the Australian Open without undergoing any quarantine, but tournament director Craig Tiley confirmed on Saturday that those not jabbed would not be allowed into Melbourne Park.

After being held in Doha and Dubai this year, qualifying for the Australian Open will also return to Melbourne Park in 2022.

Ash Barty, pictured here in action at the Adelaide International in 2021.
Ash Barty in action at the Adelaide International in 2021. (Photo by Peter Mundy/Speed Media/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Novak Djokovic responds to Aus Open vaccination mandate

On Saturday, Djokovic said "we'll have to wait and see" if he plays the Australian Open after Tiley confirmed all players must be fully vaccinated.

The nine-time and reigning Australian Open champion has refused to reveal if he's vaccinated - or if he intends to get vaccinated.

"We'll see. We'll have to wait and see," Djokovic said after losing to Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals of the ATP Finals in Turin.

"I haven't been talking to them, to be honest.

"I was just waiting to hear what the news is going to be and now that I know we'll just have to wait and see."

If he does go to Melbourne, Djokovic can attempt to break a tie with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal and win a record 21st grand slam singles title.

The Victorian state government had previously said only vaccinated people will be be allowed into the Australian Open, and Tiley reiterated that on Saturday.

"Everyone on site, the fans, all the staff, the players, will need to be vaccinated," Tiley said at the tournament's launch.

"There's been a lot of speculation about Novak's position, he's said it's a private matter.

"We would love to see Novak here, but he knows he needs to be vaccinated in order to play. He's always said that the Australian Open is the event that puts the wind in his sails."

with AAP

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting