US Tennis Association (USTA) officials reluctantly canceled all six men’s single matches, including four fourth-round clashes originally scheduled for the previous day, after just 16 minutes of play in the day session. They left open the possibility of playing the four women’s quarterfinals in the evening session, but they too were cancelled because of persistent drizzle from the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee, just as the players were about to warm-up on court. “It was definitely misting out there and with my luck I would have broke my neck and I was not up for that today,” said Serena Williams.
Thousands of paying spectators retreated to the exit gates, leaving officials with another hefty refund bill and the possibility that the championship will be pushed to a third week for the fourth year in succession.
“This is one of the biggest events in tennis, a grand slam tournament event with huge revenues, so maybe they should consider a roof in future,” said top seed Novak Djokovic, echoing sentiments that others have advocated for years. Djokovic, whose quarter-final against his Serbian Davis Cup team mate Janko Tipsarevic was postponed before he even made it on court, said he supported the players who complained about being ordered to start playing when it was still sprinkling. Rafa Nadal, Andy Murray and Andy Roddick confronted tournament organizers after their matches were halted, saying the conditions were already dangerous before they began. “It was still raining when they called us on court. The rain never really stopped, the courts were not dry,” said Nadal, who was trailing Gilles Muller 3-0 when play was stopped.