Coughing fit sees player quit Australian Open qualifying

Melbourne

The haze in Melbourne on Tuesday

Tennis Australia said it would continue to monitor on-site data and consult their medical team, the local bureau of meteorology and government scientists to determine whether conditions were fit for play. "The air was harder to breathe, nearly as if it did not all go in when I took a deep breath", Frederico Silva told Lusa.

'The awareness has grown and I think we're doing everything we possibly can to overcome this'.

Smoke haze brought on by bush fires led the organisers to momentarily put on hold practice for the competition on Tuesday, with Dalila Jakupovic compelled to relinquish her suit adhering to a coughing fit.

The worsening conditions followed months of deadly bush fires that ravaged huge parts of the Australian landscape and killed at least 27 people and destroyed more than 2,000 houses.

"Hopefully that will keep inspiring people to support this bad disaster that we were going through and helps recover all the things that we need", said world No. 1 Nadal before taking to the court for a doubles match.

One qualifier retired with breathing difficulties and Canadian Eugenie Bouchard needed medical attention, although all other matches were completed. Tha'ts why I went on the floor (of the court) because I couldn't walk any more.

The fund-raising efforts, which includes various amounts for aces served during the tournament and the sale of merchandise donated by players, will continue when the Australian Open begins on Monday.

Melbourne started the day with hazardous air pollution as smoke from wildfires in Victoria's east and in southern New South Wales state drifted through.

Officials have said this bushfire season is likely to be the worst on record, as millions of acres of land have already been razed.

A thick haze enveloped Melbourne on the first day of Australian Open qualifying Tuesday as smoke from raging wildfiresdrifted over Australia's southeast.

Former world number one Maria Sharapova's warmup match at the Kooyong Classic in Melbourne's eastern suburbs was abandoned with the Russian trailing Germany's Laura Siegemund 7-6 5-5 after both players complained to the chair umpire.

"We are all pissed and a bit disappointed because we thought they would take better care of us", she added.

Any smoke hazards will be treated in a similar way as extreme heat and rain are treated, with umpires who will be able to stop play if it is considered too unsafe to continue.

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