‘Savage’ Australian border TV programmes prepared Heather Watson for quarantine

Heather Watson pointing

Heather Watson said watching “savage” Australian border control programmes on television as a child helped her deal with the reality of spending two weeks in hotel quarantine.

The British No 2 was among 72 people who were locked in their hotel rooms following positive Covid-19 cases on flights that had taken them to the country ahead of the Australian Open.

She left quarantine on Friday and told reporters it had been a “tough” experience that had required her to stay positive.

“I think every player didn’t realise … that we would be in a hard quarantine for two weeks,” she said in comments carried by Tennis Australia.

“I was sure we would stay for the 14 days and we wouldn’t be let out because I remember at home when I was younger I used to watch these Australian border control programmes on TV and they were always savage, so I knew that we were in there for the 14 days. So I accepted that pretty quickly.

“It was definitely tough. I wouldn’t say there was anything fun or easy about it. I just tried every day to be as positive as I could. I tried to exercise every day.”

The world No 58 said she was “super excited” to begin training on actual courts ahead of the Australian Open, but was taking a considered approach to warm-up tournament the Grampians Trophy.

She will meet the 36th-ranked Veronika Kudermetova of Russia at Melbourne Park, where major competitors and recent quarantinees including three-time Grand Slam winner Angelique Kerber and former Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka will also compete.

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