With the ATP Tour set for a season restart, the top players in the men’s division are more than ready to show what they got in the tennis court.
The upcoming US Open tour will undergo a major revamp as they are taking a page out of the NBA’s playbook. The New York-based tour will have a bubble environment to where our favourite athletes will compete.
The league committee will enforce strict social distancing measures, COVID-19 testing procedures, and other similar precautions and there will be no fans who can go watch the matches in person.
Instead, they will make up for it by inviting virtual fans to watch the matches as a way to maintain fan engagement in these trying times.
Several players have already shared their thoughts about the new setup. Hence, for today, SBOBET gives you the latest roundup of ATP 2020 updates.
Stefanos Tsitsipas walks us through his “different” mindset
Tennis matches will look much different in the proposed new setup. With fans no longer watching live from the stands, a lot of us are curious on whether how will this affect the players in terms of their play.
While some might be down about it, for someone like Stefanos Tsitsipas, he sees it as a blessing in disguise.
“The controlled environment gives me a different approach towards my tennis. It gives me an opportunity to focus more and less on what’s happening outside of it, which is great,” remarked Tsitsipas.
“This situation gives me an opportunity to practice a lot, discover myself more being out on the court, love my sport even more, and appreciate my sport more,” he added.
Before the suspension of the ATP Tour, the Greece international was in superb form. He won his second consecutive Open 13 Provence title and reached to as far as the final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, although he lost to Novak Djokovic.
Furthermore, Tsitsipas believes that the absence of live fans will level the playing field, which might lead to more upsets.
“I think it’s going to create more equal space for any player. It is going to be challenging. I think it benefits a bit the lower-ranked players,” said Tsitsipas.
Andy Murray bracing for a comeback
Andy Murray is working towards a return. He had been out of action since November so he would need to find his rhythm right away before the US Open starts on August 31.
With the upcoming tour to be played in abnormal circumstances, like Tsitsipas, Murray believes that the event might witness more upsets than usual.
Murray is hopeful that he will do well in the US Open, but he has a tough draw ahead as he will face Frances Tiafoe first and then possibly Alexander Zverev in the second round.
“I feel good on the court, in terms of my hip, physically. I wanted to get to the US Open feeling pain free and enjoy a Grand Slam again,” said Murray.
Prior to the build up, Murray admitted that he was concerned about the bubble setup in New York. But after witnessing the strict measures in place, the 33-year-old is confident that the event will succeed.
“I have been tested twice. There is security on-site to make sure everyone has a mask on and hand sanitisers. From what I’ve seen so far, everyone seems to be doing the right things,” noted Murray.
Novak Djokovic comes in as the heavy favourite
The ATP 2020 odds back Novak Djokovic to win in the upcoming US Open and this doesn’t come as a surprise.
With his fellow Big 3 colleagues in Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer out, the Serb appears to have a clearer path towards winning his 18th career Grand Slam title.
Few months ago, Djokovic won at the Australian Open by beating Dominic Thiem in a five-set thriller. Thiem, who is ranked at No. 3 in the ATP rankings, was up by two sets to one before Djokovic mounted a furious comeback.
While this may look like a cakewalk for him, Djokovic’s former coach in Boris Becker believes that his path might be harder than expected, and it will be up to the Serb if he can adapt quickly in New York.
“The tournament is open. In a Grand Slam, no one has a clear path. Nole has great experience, but this situation is new to everyone. Whoever adapts first will be favoured,” said Becker.
“Who knows? Maybe new names could also emerge,” he added.
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