Well played, Pablo Cuevas.
The Uruguayan world No.68, an ATP Tour veteran at age 35, is making the best of a terrible situation after arriving for the Australian Open on a flight affected by COVID-19.
Cuevas, who arrived on a plane from Los Angeles that recorded two positive tests, found a way to pass time and practice after being confined to his hotel room for a 14-day hard quarantine.
He simply grabbed his mattress off the bed, stood it up against the wall and proceeded to whack single-hand backhands, testing out the inner springs.
He posted the footage on an Instagram story, captioned: “Yes, I’m going crazy.”
A total of 47 players have been forced into hard quarantine due to the coronavirus positives. A flight from Abu Dhabi was also affected.
A number of players have hit out at the lock-downs, claiming that the rules around what counted as a close-contact had changed and were far stricter than they’d been led to believe.
Australian Open tournament director and Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley says the Grand Slam will push on towards its February 8 start but admitted that players who could not practice for the next fortnight would be significantly affected.
The Australian Open chartered flights and created quarantine bubbles for international players, with the intention of giving them five hours of practice and training time per day, but those plans were brought undone by three positive tests for COVID-19.
None of the positive tests belonged to players. The only person thus far identified as having tested positive was the coach of women’s Slam winner Bianca Andreescu, Sylvain Bruneau, who travelled with his player on the Abu Dhabi flight.
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