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First-round withdrawals at Grand Slams could lose prize money

A player who withdraws or performs below professional standards during a first-round singles match at a Grand Slam tournament could be fined under new rules introduced Tuesday.

Published: 21st November 2017 10:54 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st November 2017 10:54 PM   |  A+A-

Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria returns to David Goffin of Belgium during their singles tennis match at the ATP World Finals at the O2 Arena in London. | AP

By Associated Press

LONDON: A player who withdraws or performs below professional standards during a first-round singles match at a Grand Slam tournament could be fined under new rules introduced Tuesday.

The Grand Slam Board says a player who is unfit to compete and withdraws before the draw will receive 50 percent of the first-round prize money. The replacement will receive the remaining 50 percent.

It is an attempt to stop players who aren't fully fit from playing in the first round just so they can collect prize money.

At the end of a two-day meeting in London, the GSB said there will be a 25-second shot clock at the 2018 Australian Open in line with a system tested at this year's U.S. Open.

The majors will also revert to 16 seeded players in 2019 from the current 32.

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