New York - Weather was a hot topic at the US Open again on
Tuesday, as players again battled high heat and humidity as well as each other
in a bid for semi-final berths.
A day after Roger Federer's hopes of a sixth title melted
away in a shock loss to 55th-ranked John Millman, the US Open's extreme heat
policy was again in effect, allowing a 10-minute break in both men's and
women's matches that went beyond straight sets.
"I had a shower, lay on the table and I didn't want to
come back again," third-seeded Argentine Juan Martin del Potro said of how
he spent the break in his 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 victory over American
"It was too hot to play tennis," Del Potro
But the combination of heat, humidity and blazing sunshine
was no joke.
Junior matches were suspended for several hours when the wet
bulb globe temperature measurement - which assesses the effects of heat,
humidity, sunlight and wind, exceeded 32.2 C - a level that poses risk of heat
Federer, who has won 20 Grand Slam titles in an array of
conditions, said he felt he "couldn't get air" in the during his
Monday night match against Millman.
"It's one of the first times it's happened to me ...
(you) just keep on sweating more and more and more and more as the match goes
Federer said he thought such conditions had become more
problematic on Ashe since the addition of the retractable roof led to diminished
airflow in the 23,000-seat stadium.
But players have suffered on all courts - five retiring from
heat-related problems in the first round to prompt organizers to implement the
extreme heat policy - the first time in Grand Slam history that such a break
has been offered during men's matches.