Murray, Kerber to play in virtual Madrid Open to raise money amid coronavirus pandemic

Andy Murray and Angelique Kerber will play in the virtual Madrid Open to raise money for those struggling in the sport and people affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Former world number ones Murray (in picture) and Kerber, who have both won three Grand Slam singles titles, are among the first stars to sign up for the tournament, which will feature 32 players and run from April 27-30.

Former world number ones Murray (in picture) and Kerber, who have both won three Grand Slam singles titles, are among the first stars to sign up for the tournament, which will feature 32 players and run from April 27-30.   -  Getty Images

Andy Murray and Angelique Kerber will play in the virtual Madrid Open later this month after the clay-court event was cancelled, organisers said on Thursday.

Players will do battle online on the Tennis World Tour videogame to raise money for those struggling in the sport and people affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Former world number ones Murray and Kerber, who have both won three Grand Slam singles titles, are among the first stars to sign up for the tournament, which will feature 32 players and run from April 27-30.

“(It) is a new challenge for us the players, and something that I have never been done before,” said Kerber.

“It’s exciting and a good opportunity to compete from home in a new format. I’m looking forward to participate.”

READ | What now for tennis in 2020?

French ATP player Lucas Pouille and Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro will also take part.

Each male and female winner will decide how much of a 150,000-euro (USD 164,000) purse to donate to “tennis players currently suffering economically“.

An additional 50,000 euros “will all go towards reducing the social impact of the Covid-19 pandemic“.

Tennis has been in lockdown since early last month and is not scheduled to return until July 13 at the earliest following the cancellation of Wimbledon for the first time since World War II.

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