Tennis players have just gone through their first tournament starts after the break caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have spoken with Karol Drzewiecki, currently the 159th doubles player in the world. After the resumption of the competition, Karol has already played in several ATP Challenger Tour tournaments, and shared his feelings regarding the events with Top Level Tennis.
Before the resumption of the games, we have written about the fact that returning to the game will be something brand new for all tennis players. While nothing, of course, has changed in terms of the game, getting used to a new reality in terms of organization will probably be a long process for the players. Karol Drzewiecki made a post-pandemic start at the first possible opportunity - during the so-called second inauguration of the season in Todi, Italy. Then, together with Szymon Walkow, he moved to the Czech Republic, where he took part in the next ATP Challenger Tour played in Ostrava. Thus, the Polish representative had a great comparison of how the topic of protection against coronavirus was approached by the organizers of both tournaments. Actually, we have to admit that the organizers are doing everything to follow all the procedures. Drzewiecki admitted that it is the issue of safety that is given the highest priority. "The first tournament I played in Todi, where I was immediately tested for COVID-19 on Sunday. However, this is not all. During the games, I was tested again together with my partner. Most of the results we received in a day or two." - says Drzewiecki. Polish doubles player also admitted that playing regularly in tournaments and coming back to the games as soon as there is a possibility is much easier in terms of organization than taking a break. While returning later to the competition, it is necessary to get tested for COVID-19 on your own. "While going to the tournament without taking part in the previous one, I would have to do a test at home, or wherever I would be at the moment. I would have to come to the place where the tournament is played with a negative result of the test and still, I would have to be tested again on Monday anyway." - shared Drzewiecki.
Recently, a lot of excitement arose due to the news from New York, where tennis players battling in the US Open were locked in a so-called bubble, which purpose was to protect them from potential contact with an infected person. When it comes to the ATP Challenger Tour, we can also talk about restrictions, but they are much lighter than in the case of the mentioned Grand Slam event. "In Italy, we all had to wear masks, and the tournament's staff kept rebuking those who did not do so. After going out on the court, the masks could be taken off only after the end of the draw before the match. One of the more interesting things is that the racket handles were particularly secured so that no bacteria could accumulate on them. Besides, every time before stepping on a court, our temperature was checked." - admits the Polish rookie, who can be proud of winning three ATP Challenger tournaments as for now. Drzewiecki also mentioned that less importance is attached to the restrictions during the Czech events where, for example, the responsibility of wearing masks is no longer scrupulously complied with. "It is much more comfortable in the Czech Republic. Actually, no one walks around in a mask, and there are more people on the stands. One can certainly say that there is a greater freedom." - summarized Drzewiecki.