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The world’s leading tennis players have begun arriving Down Under for a very different Australian summer swing reshaped by the COVID-19 pandemic. The likes of World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, No. 2 Rafael Nadal and No. 3 Dominic Thiem are preparing for an abbreviated ATP Cup, new and relocated tournaments in Melbourne and an Australian Open pushed back to February from its traditional mid-January start.

Djokovic, who last year dominated the swing by leading Serbia to victory in the ATP Cup and capturing a record eighth Australian Open title, arrived wearing his ATP Cup jacket.

To ease player travel logistics during the pandemic, Tennis Australia chartered 15 flights to bring players from the first ATP Tour stops in Antalya and Delray Beach (Miami), as well as from travel hubs including Dubai and Los Angeles. Some players will be travelling from Doha, where the Australian Open men’s qualifying event took place. Adhering to health and safety protocols in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, players will submit to 14 days of hotel quarantine upon arrival before competing. 

There will be plenty of action in store as players including Djokovic, Nadal, Thiem, Matteo Berrettini and more are set to suit up for their country 1-5 February at the ATP Cup in Melbourne. Serbia is the defending champion after winning the inaugural edition by defeating Spain in the final.

In the same week, Melbourne will also host two ATP 250 events, which run 31 Jan. – 6 Feb. David Goffin and Karen Khachanov will headline the Murray River Open (Melbourne 1), while Stan Wawrinka and home favourite Nick Kyrgios feature at Great Ocean Road Open (Melbourne 2). #NextGenATP stars including Jannik Sinner (Melbourne 1) and Felix Auger-Aliassime (Melbourne 2) will also be in action.

 

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A post shared by Stanislas Wawrinka (@stanwawrinka85)

The men’s Australian summer swing will culminate at the Australian Open, to be held from 8-21 February. Fans will be allowed to attend in a limited capacity. Djokovic is the defending champion after defeating Thiem in five sets last year to claim his eighth Melbourne crown.

 

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A post shared by Yoshihito Nishioka(西岡良仁) (@yoshihito0927)

 


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