Hong Kong Tennis Open final under threat from Typhoon Khanun with signal No 8 likely for most of day
Tournament organisers offer refunds for ticket holders but hope to get matches on court if T8 signal is lowered by 8pm
The Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open final is at risk of being postponed until Monday with the signal No 8 warning likely to remain in force all day as Typhoon Khanun looms.
Australia’s Daria Gavrilova was scheduled to face sixth seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia for the singles title in the second match on Centre Court, not before 4.30pm.
Tournament organisers said that if the T8 signal is lowered by 8pm then Sunday’s matches will be rescheduled to start as soon as possible, with ticket holders allowed entry to the stadium.
“Yeah, apparently it’s going to rain all day but I can’t control anything,” seventh seed Gavrilova, who booked her place in the final with a 6-0, 7-5 win over Jennifer Brady, said on Saturday.
“I’ll just have to wait and see what happens. I would rather not wait and play today but that’s not going to happen,” she added, laughing.
Both singles finalists were due to take a 10-hour flight later on Sunday to Moscow later, where they are seeded for first-round matches at the Kremlin Cup on Tuesday.
“It seems really bad for us on Sunday, and also I have Moscow coming up next week to play my hometown tournament, it will be very difficult as we need to fly as well,” said world No 19 Pavlyuchenkova, who extinguished home hopes in the singles by beating China’s Wang Qiang 6-3, 6-4 in Saturday’s second semi-final.
“But there’s nothing we can do about it, just fingers crossed. I’m just happy to be in a final this weekend. Right now, this is the priority.”
Taiwan’s Chan Hao-ching and Chan Yung-jan were set to take on Chinese pair Lu Jiajing and Wang in the doubles final at 2pm.
“Owing to safety reasons, ticket holders who do not make use of the tickets today, whether the matches are held or not, can arrange for a full refund,” said an official statement.
The Hong Kong Observatory issued the storm signal at 8.40am on Sunday, with weather officials expecting the typhoon to pass within 200 kilometres of Hong Kong by Sunday afternoon, accompanied by winds of 155km per hour and heavy rain.
The tournament village at the Victoria Park Tennis Centre is expected to be closed throughout the day.