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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Table: Axios Visuals

New York's Billie Jean King National Tennis Center was transformed into a field hospital for coronavirus overflow in April. Today, it welcomes the 128 participants of the 140th U.S. Open.

Yes, but: It won't welcome any of the 30,000 daily fans it normally draws, with strict safety protocols barring entry for any non-essential personnel.

The bubble: The venue was turned into a bubble for the recently concluded Western & Southern Open, and will operate similarly for the U.S. Open.

  • Players must stay in one of two nearby hotels — or a private home vetted by the USTA — and they're not allowed to go anywhere except the venue.
  • Testing is done every four days, but only after returning two negatives in the first 48 hours after arrival. (Frenchman Benoît Paire, the No. 17 seed, tested positive on Sunday and has been replaced by an alternate.)

The field: With so many top players opting out for health reasons amid the pandemic, the field is wide open. Well, at least on the women's side.

  • Women: Six of the top 10 players are out, and No. 7 seed Naomi Osaka is dealing with a hamstring injury that caused her to withdraw from the Western & Southern finals on Saturday.
  • Men: With his Western & Southern Open title, No. 1 ranked Novak Djokovic improved to 23-0 in 2020. He's the heavy favorite with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal both opting out.

Go deeper

Sep 29, 2020 - Sports

Tennessee Titans close facility amid NFL's first coronavirus outbreak

Cutouts of fans are afixed to seats before the game between the Tennessee Titans and Minnesota Vikings. Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

The NFL announced Tuesday that three players and five staffers from the Tennessee Titans tested positive for coronavirus, forcing the temporary closure of the team's facility, ESPN reports.

Why it matters: It's the league's first outbreak during the season, which is not taking place in a "bubble," like the NBA and MLS, and looks set to test if its coronavirus protocols will hold.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: U.S. ahead of pace on vaccines.
  2. Health: Lessons for trapping the next pandemic.
  3. Tech: "Fludemic" model accurately maps COVID hotspotsVirtual doctor's visits and digital health tools take off.
  4. Politics: Harris breaks tie as Senate proceeds with lengthy debate on COVID relief bill — Republican governor of West Virginia says there's no plan to lift mask mandate.
  5. World: Canada vaccine panel recommends 4 months between doses — In AstraZeneca spat, EU fights hard for a vaccine its hardly using.
Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

In AstraZeneca spat, EU fights hard for a vaccine it's hardly using

Macron, Merkel and European Council President Charles Michel (R) at a summit in October. Photo: Yves Herman/Pool/AFP via Getty

Italy on Thursday blocked the export of 250,000 AstraZeneca doses to Australia, becoming the first EU country to exercise an export ban due to a vaccine shortfall in the bloc.

Why it matters: The controversial step exposes multiple major challenges to distributing vaccines — even among the world’s richest countries.

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