US Open officials have been closing the roof during the day as part of a “heat policy” to make it cooler.

But the opposite has happened because the closed areas has become more humid for the players – just check out Daniel Medvedev during his quarterfinal win over Andrey Rublev.

Soaking in sweat as the temperature neared 35 Celsius Medvedev looked into a courtside camera and issued what sounded like a mix between a warning and a plea.

“You cannot imagine,” he said. “One player (is) gonna die, and they’re gonna see.”

Medvedev even used an inhaler during the second-set.

“At the end of the first set, I couldn’t see the ball anymore,” he added.

Daniil Medvedev cools down after he wins his quarterfinal match. Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

Under a new rule the USTA closed the retractable Ashe roof to provide some additional protection from the sun, but the shadows it caused made it hard to see the balls as they zipped through the air.

Others, including media, have complained about the humidity, but no one has listened to the issue, like no one has listened to the criticism of midnight hour tennis – with games ending at 2am.

The humidity got too much for Daniil Medvedev. Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

Aryna Sabalenka wasn’t too worried though.

“It was hot, but because I did my preparation in Florida — I mean, what can be worse than Florida? I mean, in July and June,”she said.

Ironically, the US Open officials said during the week they were conducting a mental health forum, “Mental Health and Sport: Why It Matters.”

Among the wokish topics discussed there was mental toughness v mental wellness and social media and its impact on mental well-being, bit nothing on the welfare of a player forced to pay until 2am to satisfy a commercial contract, have to shower, change, eat and then try to sleep, before going through through same process a couple of days later.

Bizarre, but it is New York, the city that expects no one to sleep.

Others in hot water included eco protesters who tried to glue themselves to the floor on Arthur Ashe court.
NYPD Cops quickly swooped to detain them. Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

AND talking of bizarre… quote of the week from the USTA re closing the roof.

“The roof was closed at the completion of this match to further facilitate the climatization process.”

Translation anyone?

NEW York was hoping it had escaped the eco-clowns who have disrupted sporting events this year – protesting that our energy supplies should be shut down so we can all go back to pre-industrial revolution times.

Sadly it wasn’t to be as Coco Gauff’s march to her first US One final was delayed for nearly an hour as four idiots decided to turn up and voice their horror that we are all going to boil to death (according to the UN) tomorrow.

Security though did their job eventually as one idiot glued his bare feet to the concrete.

Surrounded by 15 of New York City’s finest, all four were eventually taken away and held in custody.

And the irony of this tale? The glue used by the protester would have been an oil (fossil fuel) derivative.

Fluffy yellow balls at the French Open. Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

BUT one eco problem tennis does have is its yellow fluffy balls.

Tennis balls are extremely hard to recycle and the industry has yet to develop a ball to make that process easier.

According to the latest stats (who compiles this sort of brain numbing stuff?) nearly all of the 330 million balls made worldwide each year end up in the garbage, with most in landfills, where it is believed they can take over 400 years to decompose.

In an era where almost everything – and everything we do – is slammed as a danger to the planet, it is worth noting that tennis balls make up way less than 1% of the hundreds of millions of rubbish produced every year.

Some of course, are recycled as toys for dogs, and others are ground down to recycle as footing for horse-based arenas, and ironically tennis courts!

GRAMMY Award-winning composer and singer Cécile McLorin Salvant performed “America the Beautiful” on court before yesterday’s women’s singles championship between Coco Gauff and Aryna Sabalenka.

Prior to “America the Beautiful,” singers from the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School in nearby Astoria, Queens – founded by tennis player and fan Tony Bennett, who passed away in July, and his wife Susan – also performed a medley tribute to Bennett.

American NFL legend Tom Brady and family watch Carlos Alcaraz play Daniil Medvedev on Arthur Ashe stadium in the mens semi finals.
Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

CELEBRITIES were out in force at the US Open to take in Coco Gauff’s first Grand Slam title.

The stands on Arthur Ashe Stadium were heaving with stars from the big screen, small screen, and the sporting world, including Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, Mindy Kaling, Amanda Seyfried, Rachel Brosnahan, Cara Delevigne, Kevin Durant, Jimmy Butler, Maria Sharapova, Andy Roddick, Monica Seles, Tracy Austin, Shonda Rhimes, Laura Dern, Mariska Hargitay, Al Roker, Diane Keaton, Jake Paul and Alec Baldwin.

NAOMI Osaka is set to return to tennis for the Australian Open in January, announcing last week her break from the sport “really fuelled a fire in me”.

The 25-year-old gave birth to daughter Shai in July and hasn’t played since September 2022. In an interview with ESPN at the US Open Osaka replied “yes” when asked if she would be in Melbourne at the start of next year.

Osaka said she was anticipating making a full-time return to the women’s tour in 2024.

“It’s definitely way more tournaments than I used to play,” she said.

“I think it’s because I realise like I don’t know how the beginning of the year is going to go for me.

“I don’t know the level of play and I think I kind of have to ease into it, so at the very least I’m going to set myself up for a very good end of the year.”

Naomi Osaka talks to the press at the 2022 Australian Open. Photo: MARK PETERSON/TENNIS AUSTRALIA