Kristina Mladenovic revealed she has had to enter a "bubble bubble" at the US Open after coming into contact with Benoit Paire, who tested positive for coronavirus.

Paire was removed from the men's singles draw after the United States Tennis Association (USTA) on Sunday confirmed an unnamed player had returned a positive COVID-19 test.

As the grand slam got under way behind closed doors at Flushing Meadows on Monday, it was reported a number of French players had to abide by strict quarantine rules because they were in contact with compatriot Paire.

Mladenovic confirmed she must adhere to tighter regulations in New York after she beat Hailey Baptiste 7-5 6-2 on day one of the tournament.

Asked if she had been in contact with Paire, she said: "I did a one-hour training session with Benoît a few days ago, but we were on either side of the net, and that is not taken into account. 

"On the other hand, I also spent between half an hour and three quarters of an hour, in the hotel lobby, playing cards with different people. Benoit was there. 

"It was the fact of having passed that moment, even though we were all masked, that led to the continuation. It was hard for me to accept the situation because I am not part of his close entourage. And I'm sorry and sad for Benoit."

Quizzed how her situation has changed, Mladenovic replied: "I have the right to play my match, but I literally have the right to do nothing else. 

"I am not allowed to go to the gym, not to do anything that is public inside the bubble. I can only be completely alone with my brother, who coaches me. It's really a bubble within the bubble."

Mladenovic revealed she had returned two negative COVID-19 tests since it was revealed Paire had tested positive.

An unnamed player withdrawn from the US Open on the eve of the tournament after testing positive for coronavirus.

It was reported on Sunday that world number 22 Benoit Paire had returned a positive COVID-19 test at Flushing Meadows.

The United States Tennis Association (USTA) confirmed one player would miss the grand slam after contracting the virus but did not reveal their identity.

"A player has tested positive for COVID-19 at the US Open and has been withdrawn from the tournament. The player is asymptomatic," a USTA statement said.

"The USTA, together with its medical advisors and infectious disease specialist from the Mount Sinai Health System, confirmed a positive test result for a player.

"In accordance with New York State Department of Health requirements, and in alignment with CDC guidelines and the tournament health and safety protocols, the player has been advised that they must isolate for at least 10 days.

"In addition, contact tracing has been initiated to determine if anyone must quarantine for 14 days."

The vast majority of players are staying in a bubble at the famous New York venue for the first major since the tennis season ground to a halt in March due to the pandemic.

Novak Djokovic faced opposition from his two greatest on-court rivals, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, as the Serbian pushed for a breakaway tennis players' union.

World number one Djokovic, who has been president of the ATP player council since 2016, has teamed up with Canadian player Vasek Pospisil to push for the move.

Players reportedly received a letter on Friday inviting them to join the new Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA).

Djokovic has said he believes the PTPA and the current ATP Tour, which runs the men's top-level tournaments, can work together in the future.

The 17-time grand slam champion wants the union to be entirely independent of the ATP.

Nadal and Federer, however, say now is not the time for such a move that could create divisions in tennis.

"The world is living a difficult and complicated situation," Nadal wrote on Twitter.

"I personally believe these are times to be calm and work all of us together in the same direction. It is time for unity, not for separation.

"These are moments where big things can be achieved as long as the world of tennis is united. We all, players, tournaments and governing bodies have to work together. We have a bigger problem and separation and disunion is definitely not the solution."

Federer added: "I agree @RafaelNadal. These are uncertain and challenging times, but I believe it's critical for us to stand united as players, and as a sport, to pave the best way forward."

Federer – a 20-time grand slam champion – and Nadal are sitting out the US Open, which begins on Monday in New York.

Swiss superstar Federer is recovering from knee surgery and 19-time major winner Nadal elected not to play, being wary of international travel during the coronavirus pandemic.

Andy Murray, who for years formed part of a 'Big Four' with Djokovic, Federer and Nadal, expressed a cautious view, saying it was too soon to commit to such a major step for the sport.

"I won't be signing it today," Murray said, according to the Guardian.

"I'm not totally against a player union, or players' association, but right now there's a couple of things: one is I feel like the current management should be given some time to implement their vision. Whether that works out or not would potentially influence me in the future as to which way I would go.

"Also, the fact that the women aren't part of [the new plans]. I feel like that would send a significantly much more powerful message, if the WTA were on board as well. That's not currently the case. If those things changed in the future, it's something that I would certainly consider."

The second grand slam of 2020 gets underway on Monday as a very different US Open begins in New York.

The coronavirus pandemic means there will be players skipping the tournament, fans not allowed into the venue and strict protocols put in place for those who have chosen to take part.

Defending men's champion Rafael Nadal will not be playing and Roger Federer is out until next year after undergoing surgery, meaning Novak Djokovic has a strong chance of claiming an 18th major title.

Serena Williams will resume her quest for a 24th singles triumph at a grand slam, a task perhaps made easier by the fact six of the WTA's top-10 players are not in the draw.

History beckons for both Djokovic and Williams at Flushing Meadows, as Opta data shows...

1 - This will be the first major since Djokovic's professional debut in 2005 where two of the 'Big Three' are missing. Federer, Nadal and Djokovic have won each of the past 13 slams between them (Djokovic 5, Nadal 5, Federer 3).

3 - Djokovic has won five of the past seven majors but three of his most recent seven defeats at those events have come against unseeded players, as many as in his first 36 such losses.

8 - The Serbian has reached the last four in 11 of his previous 12 US Opens and has been in the final eight times, the best tally in the open era alongside Ivan Lendl and Pete Sampras.

14 - The last American man to reach the US Open final was Andy Roddick in 2006, when he lost to Federer. Sam Querrey (2017) and John Isner (2018) are the only players from the United States to reach the men's' quarter-finals since the beginning of 2012.

15 - Of the past 16 winners of the men's title, 15 have been European. The exception is Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, who won in 2009. Before that, 10 of the previous 11 champions had been non-European.

- Andy Murray (2012 final) is the only player due to attend the US Open in 2020 to have beaten Djokovic at Flushing Meadows.

5 - Since reaching the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 2017, Murray has only played two grand slam tournaments and has failed to progress beyond the second round each time. However, he has reached the quarter-finals in five of his previous seven US Open appearances.

1 - The US Open is the only men's grand slam in the open era that has not seen a player win the competition without dropping a set en route to the title.

17 - Conversely, women have won the US Open without dropping a set on 17 occasions. The last to do so was Serena Williams six years ago.

33 - Flavia Pennetta (33 years, six months and 18 days) is the oldest winner of the women's singles title in the open era. This year, Serena Williams will be 38, while sister Venus will be 40.

4 - Top seed Karolina Pliskova has not reached the quarter-finals in any of her past four grand slams, the longest spell for her since she first made it to the last eight in a major for the first time at the US Open four years ago.

23 - Serena Williams will draw level with Margaret Court on 24 grand slam singles titles with a triumph at Flushing Meadows. She has not won any of the previous 12 slams, though, losing four finals in that run. It is her longest such drought since 1999.

1 - Naomi Osaka is the only woman to win consecutive grand slam singles titles (US Open 2018 and Australian Open 2019) over the past 18 tournaments. She has not gone beyond the fourth round of a major since that win in Melbourne.

5 - Reigning Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin has failed to get beyond round three in her five appearances at the US Open.

6 - With defending champion Bianca Andreescu not taking part, this will be the sixth consecutive year where there will be a different winner of the women's title. Serena Williams is the last woman to win consecutive US Opens, claiming three in a row from 2012 to 2014.

0 - The US Open is the only slam where Petra Kvitova has never gone beyond the quarter-finals, and she has only reached that stage twice in 12 attempts. In seven of her previous nine visits to Flushing Meadows, she has been eliminated by a lower-ranked player.

Vasek Pospisil has resigned from the ATP Player Council amid reports a breakaway body is set to be formed.

The New York Times reported on Friday that world number one Novak Djokovic and the top men's players are creating a players' association.

Amid reports president Djokovic had resigned, Pospisil confirmed on Twitter he had stepped down.

"After two years on the ATP Player Council, I am resigning from my position as the player representative for the 51-100 ranking positions," the Canadian wrote.

"It has become clear that, as a player council member within the current structure of the ATP, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to have any significant impact on any major decisions made by our tour.

"I am proud to say I have always fought for what I believed to be right and, in doing so, never compromised my integrity.

"My sole mission on the council was to represent my peers well, and I'm extremely proud to have done that to the best of my abilities. I leave holding my head high."

Djokovic and Pospisil will serve as initial co-presidents of the new body, according to The New York Times.

Last time it was down to the work of Ivo Heuberger. This time it is because of the coronavirus pandemic and the management of a veteran body that has ruled over tennis for two decades.

The 2020 US Open will represent the first time in 21 years that a grand slam has taken place without either Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal being there to contest the men's singles crown.

Not since Heuberger, a Swiss journeyman who reached a high of 102 in the world rankings during a nine-year career, defeated an 18-year-old Federer in qualifying for the 1999 US Open has one of the sport's majors been shorn of the two all-time greats from the modern era.

It was only Federer's fourth appearance at a grand slam – in qualifying or the main draw – and it took place two years before Nadal even turned professional.

The duo have since firmly established themselves at the top of the list for all-time major title wins. Federer has 20, Nadal has 19 – that is almost half of all the grand slams have taken place since the 1999 US Open.

What tennis looked like then

Pete Sampras had returned to the top of the world rankings for a 10th time by bouncing back from the disappointment of a second-round exit at Roland Garros – a tournament he skipped the Australian Open to focus on – by racking up a 24-match winning streak that included successive titles at Queen's, Wimbledon, Los Angeles and Cincinnati.

He looked primed to tie Jimmy Connors' record of five US Open titles and surpass Roy Emerson's total of 12 major triumphs, but a back injury sustained during practice ahead of the tournament forced him to withdraw.

Sampras' frustration at the French Open was added to by the fact Andre Agassi took home the Coupe des Mousquetaires, meaning he completed the career Grand Slam ahead of his American rival.

What happened at the US Open?

Agassi took full advantage of the fact Sampras was unable to compete, sealing his fifth grand slam title by coming from two-sets-to-one down in the final for a 6-4 6-7 (5-7) 6-7 (2-7) 6-3 6-2 victory against seventh seed Todd Martin.

It was a fairly serene path to the showpiece for Agassi, who only dropped one set to Jimmy Gimelstob en route to a semi-final against two-time major champion Yevgeny Kafelnikov.

Agassi overcame a shaky start to defeat the Russian 1-6 6-3 6-3 6-3 and secure a return to the top of the rankings, having sunk to 141 less than two years prior.

He held onto that position for the remainder of 1999 as Sampras' run of six straight year-end number ones came to an end.

What were Federer and Nadal up to?

After turning pro in 1998, Federer flitted between the ATP Tour and the Challenge Tour the following year. By the time it came to US Open qualifying he had a 6-12 record in top-level events and had lost in the first round at the French Open and Wimbledon – his first grand slam appearances.

Nadal was just 13 years old. He had already enjoyed some success in his age group but was splitting his time between tennis and playing football – his uncle Miguel Angel Nadal was a professional footballer and had just returned to Real Mallorca following a successful stint at Barcelona.

What does it mean for the future?

Unfortunately, grand slams without both Federer and Nadal are likely to be a fixture of the not-too-distant future.

Federer underwent a knee operation during the coronavirus pandemic and, now 39, is only looking towards the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year – what lies beyond that is unclear.

Nadal opted against travelling to New York due to coronavirus concerns but he should have enough gas in his tank to challenge for more major titles and, alongside Novak Djokovic, put pressure on Federer's record haul.

There is still plenty of young talent in Dominic Thiem, Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev and Matteo Berrettini, and they may well soon come to the fore in the biggest tournaments.

Novak Djokovic will begin his quest for a fourth US Open title against Damir Dzumhur.

The Serbian, who will be chasing an 18th grand slam singles triumph without Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer competing, could meet fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas or Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals.

Andy Murray, champion in 2012, faces Yoshihito Nishioka in the first round and could play 15th seed Felix Auger-Aliassime in round two.

Second seed Dominic Thiem is also in the bottom quarter of the draw. He begins against Jaume Munar and could meet Murray in round four.

Women's top seed Karolina Pliskova starts against Anhelina Kalinina and is on course for a fourth-round meeting with Angelique Kerber.

Fourth seed and 2018 champion Naomi Osaka begins against fellow Japanese player Misaki Doi and could face Coco Gauff in an exciting-looking third round.

Serena Williams, chasing grand slam singles title number 24, begins against compatriot Kristie Ahn. Her sister Venus has a tough first-round clash with 20th seed Karolina Muchova.

Second seed and Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin plays Yanina Wickmayer of Belgium in round one and could face Serena in the semi-finals.

Wild card Kim Clijsters is also in the bottom quarter of the draw and will start against 21st seed Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Play at Flushing Meadows begins on Monday.

Bob and Mike Bryan have announced the end of their career as doubles partners after winning a record 119 titles in 26 seasons.

The American brothers, who made their major championship debut at the US Open back in 1995, are the most successful men's doubles pairing in the Open Era.

They were winners at all four grand slams - taking 16 slam titles together, from 30 finals - as well as all nine ATP Masters 1000s, at which they landed 39 titles as a duo.

The Bryans also triumphed in four ATP World Tour Finals and won gold at the London 2012 Olympics.

Their final trophy came in February when they won the Delray Beach Open for a sixth time.

"We feel it’s the right time to walk away," Mike Bryan said in a statement. "We've given over 20 years to the tour, and we are now looking forward to the next chapter of our lives.

"With that said, we feel very blessed to have been able to play the game of doubles for so long. We are grateful to have had the opportunities in the beginning of the year to play and say our goodbyes to the fans. Winning our final event in Delray Beach and clinching the Davis Cup tie in Honolulu are moments we'll forever remember and cherish."

Bob Bryan said: "We're most proud of the way we devoted ourselves completely to the game and gave our full effort every day.

"Our loyalty toward each other never wavered and we are leaving professional tennis with zero regrets. We'll miss the competition and camaraderie amongst the players. We'll also miss the excitement of gearing up for a big match and playing for the roar of the fans."

The Bryans, 41, played in 178 tour-level finals and won more than 1,100 team matches.

Andrea Gaudenzi, ATP chairman, said: "As the most successful men's doubles team of all time, Bob and Mike have rewritten the record books throughout their phenomenal careers.

"It's difficult to put into words what they have brought to the game, not only on the court but also off it. As flag bearers for men's doubles, they have been a model of consistency and excellence for the past 20 years, winning more matches, titles, and holding more weeks at number one than any team in history."

Milos Raonic has called on the ATP and WTA tours to "band together" in the fight against racial inequality and social injustice, believing stronger action is required,

All three NBA playoff games scheduled to take place on Wednesday were postponed amid protests following the shooting of Jacob Blake, a black man, by police in the state of Wisconsin.

Other sports followed suit: MLB saw three games postponed, while five of the six scheduled MLS fixtures also did not go ahead. In tennis, Naomi Osaka withdrew from the Western and Southern Open, a move she hopes "can get a conversation started in a majority white sport".

The United States Tennis Association, along with the ATP and WTA, which run men's and women's tennis, announced there would be no play in the tournament in New York on Thursday, with the semi-finals moved to Friday instead.

Canadian Raonic, who is due to play Stefanos Tsitsipas in the last four, offered his support, insisting previous steps taken "can only do so much".

The world number 30 also made clear he believes the time has come to make a stand in a way that has financial implications, what he described as "real disruption".

"I think having a sign somewhere, of support, banners at a tournament or wearing a shirt in a warmup at an NBA game, it can only do so much," Raonic told the media.

"I think real disruption ... that's what makes change. I think real disruption is caused by affecting people in a monetary way. And that can cause some kind of change.

"And I'm hoping with what the NBA does, and I'm hoping that we at least on the men's tour as well as the women's [tour], we band together and show our support because there are many people that are not being treated fairly, are being disrespected, having to live in fear and a lot of things that I've never had to experience.

"It's very unfortunate, it's very sad, and I'm hoping that there is a change, I'm hoping that the actions that do take course, over the next days, weeks, months, years, this isn't going to change in a day, but really do provide a change, systematic change, equal opportunity for everybody, especially in the free world."

Osaka released a statement on Twitter confirming she would not be participating in her semi-final against Elise Mertens, explaining there were "more important matters at hand that need immediate attention, rather than watching me play tennis".

"I don't expect anything drastic to happen with me not playing, but if I can get a conversation started in a majority white sport I consider that a step in the right direction," the two-time major winner wrote.

"Watching the continued genocide of Black people at the hand of police is honestly making me sick to my stomach. I'm exhausted of having a new hashtag pop up every few days and I'm extremely tired of having this same conversation over and over again.

"When will it ever be enough? #JacobBlake, #BreonnaTaylor, #ElijahMcclain, #GeorgeFloyd."

Barack Obama, Billie Jean King and LeBron James led rallying calls on a seismic day in American sport, as games were called off in protest at racial injustice.

In a forceful message, athletes and teams downed tools in North America as they boycotted scheduled fixtures following the shooting of Jacob Blake, a black man, by police in the state of Wisconsin.

Blake was shot several times in the back, prompting nationwide protests.

All three NBA playoff games set for Wednesday were postponed, and it was reported widely that players from the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers were in favour of boycotting the rest of the season.

The NBA board of governors were set for a Thursday meeting, with players also reportedly due to hold a follow-up to their Wednesday get-together.

Major League Baseball saw three games postponed, namely those between the Milwaukee Brewers and Cincinnati Reds, Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants, and Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres.

Five of six Major League Soccer games also did not go ahead, while Thursday's play at the Western and Southern Open tennis tournament in New York was suspended, with Naomi Osaka pulling out of the tournament after reaching the semi-finals.

Former US president Obama saluted the Milwaukee Bucks for boycotting Game 5 in their series against the Orlando Magic.

Milwaukee is the nearest major city to Kenosha, where Blake was shot. Obama also saluted Clippers coach Doc Rivers, who criticised President Donald Trump when he spoke powerfully on Tuesday. Rivers accused the Republican Party of "spewing this fear".

Obama wrote on Twitter: "I commend the players on the @Bucks for standing up for what they believe in, coaches like @DocRivers, and the @NBA and @WNBA for setting an example. It's going to take all our institutions to stand up for our values."

Speaking earlier in the day, Lakers superstar James wrote on Twitter: "F*** THIS MAN!!!! WE DEMAND CHANGE. SICK OF IT".

Clippers owner Steve Ballmer added: "I am again angry over the shooting of a black man #JacobBlake. @DocRivers and The @Bucks players said it well, we need real police accountability. Give citizens data to do so. Let's have criminal justice reform that keeps all people safe but not senselessly imprisoned or afraid."

Tennis great King, who has fought for the growth of women's sport and for social justice, praised Japanese player Osaka's decision to abandon the Western and Southern Open in her individual protest.

King wrote: "A brave and impactful move by @naomiosaka, in support of the protest movement moving through the sports world. She was to play in the semis. Athletes using platforms for good means so much. Don't remain silent. #BlackLivesMatter"

Fellow tennis Hall of Famer Martina Navratilova added: "An amazing stance Naomi ... well done, nothing but respect!!!"

The NHL faced criticism, however, for a perceived lack of response as the Stanley Cup playoffs continue.

Canadian star Evander Kane, who plays for the San Jose Sharks, tore into the league by saying: "Actually it's incredibly insulting as a black man in hockey the lack of action and acknowledgement from the @nhl, just straight up insulting."

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