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Australia’s Alexei Popyrin says he will not play the US Open this year.

Tennis Express

The World No.103 says that he never really wanted to play and now that the US Open has altered its rankings system to allow players to keep their points from 2019, he’s made up his mind.

“I never really wanted to go to play US Open,” he said. “I think with the situation that’s happening in America right now, it is very hard to go and play the US Open. I think it’s a big risk for everybody to go and play.”

Popyrin added that the rankings situation helps him a lot. He reached the third round at the US Open last year. With the ATP announcing that players can keep their 2019 ranking points if they don't play the same event in 2020, or if they do so, but don't pick up as many points.

"If a player's 2019 result is better than his 2020 result, his 2020 result will not be included in his ranking breakdown," The ATP stated in its updated ranking brief on Monday.

With news of Rafael Nadal's participation in the Madrid Masters this year, it is believed that the Spaniard will likely take a pass on New York as well. Nadal can keep his 2000 points for winning the title in 2019. It won't be surprising if other players decided to skip it as well.

“What ATP have done with the rankings I think is great,” Popyrin said. “Freeze the rankings and if you don’t go you keep your rankings, it puts the pressure off players to actually be forced to go play. I think for me I don’t think I’ll go this year.”