29 Aug 2011

US Open to start on time in New York

2:07 pm on 29 August 2011

The US tennis Open will start tomorrow as planned after the National Tennis Center in New York escaped serious damage from Hurricane Irene.

The hurricane surged through New York overnight, flooding waterfronts and low-lying areas, but America's most populous city avoided the heavy devastation which had been feared.

US Tennis Association officials say they're communicating with city officials regarding mass transit and road conditions, but will be starting the year's last grand slam tournament as scheduled.

In a revised schedule, eighth-seeded American Mardy Fish will play the first match at Arthur Ashe Stadium against Tobias Kamke of Germany.

Former champion Maria Sharapova, the third seed, follows on to the centre court against Briton Heather Watson.

Twice-winner Venus Williams and five-times champion Roger Federer feature in the opening night session.