View Full Version : Players Could get heat breaks

Aug 9th, 2008, 07:37 PM
Players in the Olympic tennis events could be allowed heat breaks if the stifling weather continues, International Tennis Federation president Francesco Ricci Bitti has said.

Temperatures into the high 90s Fahrenheit (above 35 Celsius) combined with suffocating humidity have made practice difficult this week with several players saying the conditions are as uncomfortable as they have ever known.

"It's within the power of our officiating team to take measures in case the situation is reaching an unacceptable level," Ricci Bitti said on the eve of the tournament.

"The conditions are not the best, but our players are very strong. What is important is the health of the player.

"The position now is that the health of the players is not at risk but each sport has some flexibility by the IOC."

Women's Tour chiefs, the WTA, adopted an Extreme Weather Rule in 1992, which allows a 10-minute break between the second and third sets should the Heat Stress Index reach 82F or the actual temperature reaches 90F.

The Heat Stress Index factors together the air temperature, the humidity and the radiant heat from the court surface, which is more of a factor on the kind of hardcourts being used in Beijing.

The ATP is yet to adopt an extreme weather policy meaning men are not allowed heat breaks on the regular Tour or at grand slam events.

Rain and temperatures up to 88F are forecast for Sunday and Monday, with humidity at 90 percent.

"This is the hottest weather I think I've ever experienced," Slovakia's Daniela Hantuchova said this week.

Britain's Andy Murray has described the humidity as "very tough".

Women's matches are often interrupted by soaring temperatures at the Australian Open.

Aug 9th, 2008, 08:07 PM
It's good and bad if they play through the heat it could be damaging if they go off for a break it could break there rhythm and lose them the match!