Murray pleased with US Open changes


Andy Murray hailed a victory for player power following confirmation that the finalists at next year’s US Open will have a day off after their semi-finals. The change means the year’s fourth and last grand slam will run into a third Monday, when the men’s final will take place.
The women’s semi-finals will be played on the second Friday of the tournament, followed on Sunday by the final, while the men’s last-four matches are scheduled for the Saturday, affording the winners a free day before their title match.
It was also announced that prize money would rise by four million US dollars (£2.5million) to 29.5million dollars (£18.2million). The challenge of playing up to five sets on back-to-back days was an issue the players had taken up, and world number three Murray , who won his maiden grand slam in New York this year, is glad they have been listened to by the United States Tennis Association.
Murray said on “I’m pleased that the USTA has modified the US Open schedule to include a day of rest between the semi-finals and final.
“Together with the prize money increase, it’s good that they’ve taken on board the players’ concerns.”
Defending women’s champion Serena Williams added: “Both the prize money increase and the addition of a day of rest are great for the players. These moves make the tournament stronger than it’s ever been for all players.”
Explaining how the decision was reached, USTA chairman and president Jon Vegosen said: “We recognise the increased physicality required to compete at the highest level of the sport, and we have responded to the players’ request for a scheduled day of rest between the singles semi-finals and finals. “The record increase in US Open prize money and the changes in the next year’s schedule are aimed at rewarding the players’ talents and accommodating the rigours of the modern professional game.” The 2013 US Open will run from August 26 to September 9.
US Open 2013 change puts men’s final on Monday: The U.S. Open tennis tournament has extended its schedule to a Monday men’s finish next year after a fifth year of weather delays disrupted the event in September, the U.S. Tennis Association said on Friday.
The new program will feature a Sunday women’s final followed by the men’s title match on Monday, and provide a day’s rest between the semi-finals and finals for both the men and women, bringing the U.S. Open in line with the other grand slams.
The change, which affects just the 2013 event pending a decision on the years going forward, will abolish the Open’s controversial Super Saturday, that for nearly 30 years had the men’s semi-finals and women’s final scheduled on the same day.
The USTA, which had been harshly criticized by players over the scheduling, also announced an addition of $4 million to the prize money pool for the year’s final grand slam, bringing the total to $29.5 million.
“Both the prize money increase and the addition of a day of rest are great for the players,” Serena Williams, who won the 2012 women’s crown for her fourth Open title, said in a statement. “These moves make the tournament stronger than it’s ever been for all players.”
Men’s champion Andy Murray, who claimed his maiden grand slam title at the National Tennis Center , also applauded the change.