The authorities have put the matches on hold after athletes voiced their concerns about the events in Wisconsin.
The recent police shooting of a black man named Jacob Blake in Wisconsin has stirred the social media yet again as the netizens are protesting against the racial injustice. The incident resulted in several sports events including the NBA getting postponed after players decided to withdraw their names as a form of protest. ATP/WTA’s Western and Southern Open’s tennis star Naomi Osaka withdrew her name from the semi-finals. Then, the organizers of the tournament decided to postpone the event amid violent protest all over New York.
“As a sport, tennis is collectively taking a stance against racial inequality and social injustice that once again has been thrust to the forefront in the United States,” the statement read.
“The USTA, WTA and ATP Tour have decided to recognize this moment in time by pausing tournament play at the Western and Southern Open on Thursday, August 27.
“Play will resume on Friday, August 28.”
Osaka who is 10th in the WTA rankings defeated Anett Kontaveit of Estonia in the quarterfinals in three sets and was set to play the semifinals against Belgium’s Elise Mertens at the Cincinnati Open. However, the shooting changed the dynamics for the 22-year old as he will look to regain her focus back in the game on Friday.
Jacob Blake, the man from Wisconsin was shot seven times by the police on Sunday which led to massive protests and outburst in the city resulting in the death of two people.
The protest was not limited to the tennis court, as NBA outfit Milwaukee Bucks boycotted their first-round playoff game against Orlando Magic. Giannis Antetokounmpo and company were already 3-1 in the series against the Magic and a win on Wednesday would have sealed their spot onto the next round. However, the players felt that it was their duty to voice their opinion on a larger scale.
The boycott from the Bucks forced the NBA committee to postpone the playoffs fixtures for the time being. Even the other games on Wednesday where Houston Rockets were supposed to go up against Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers were in for a possible wrap up against Portland Trailblazers were also postponed. Game 5 of each series will be rescheduled later, confirmed by the league.
There were also protests from players in different sports starting from renowned sporting personalities across baseball, soccer etc. Several baseball and MLS matches were also postponed.