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Australian Open boss Craig Tiley: "Was insulted in the calls"

The Australian Open 2021 is history, the major scandals did not materialize at least during the tournament. Probably also a credit to Craig Tiley, who looked back over the past few weeks.

by Florian Goosmann
last edit: Feb 22, 2021, 01:55 pm

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Craig Tiley is a man of straight words
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Craig Tiley

Craig Tiley and Tennis Australia have the Australian Open behind them - after enormous organization and expense. The loss of this year's edition is estimated at around 65 million euros , in particular due to the quarantine measures and the five-day absence of spectators during the tournament. /

That Tiley punched through the Australian Open, probably also because other cities liked to position themselves - Shanghai, Madrid, Indian Wells ... "My job in the leadership position is to protect the event and history, including his position on the calendar, " says Tiley .

Who has only slept three or four hours a night in the past six weeks: After passengers on three aircraft tested positive for COVID-19 and 72 players had to go into the hard quarantine , he spoke to everyone involved individually via Zoom : first with the players and their teams, then with the men and their supervisors. And finally with the international staff - referees, media, officials. 451 people in total were this, at least five hours of phone calls per night. "I was insulted in the calls. That was really tough, " Tiley told . "But I decided that I would face it and take everyone's anger on me, not my team."


Tiley after 50 hour shift: "A kind of torture"

The difficult thing: "Usually when you get angry, it happens once. But here it went on for 15 days. It was like being verbally attacked for 15 days."

During this time he sent his family to a coastal town south of Melbourne. "The stress that affected our home was too much." The ulterior motive: if you are insulted for days, you are happy to take it out on others, he wanted to avoid that. Once he was awake for 50 hours straight, Tiley said, "it's like torture, sleep deprivation is a form of torture."

Ultimately, however, it was his decision. Several times he expected Victoria's Prime Minister Dan Andrews to call and cancel the tournament.

In the end, he didn't want to throw in the towel, despite the many low points: after the flights, the hotel employee who tested positive, when the spectators had to leave the facility at midnight. But it was worth the stress. "I would do this over 100 times."

by Florian Goosmann

Feb 22, 2021, 03:05 pm
last edit: Feb 22, 2021, 01:55 pm