‘It’s nice, but a little surreal to play again,’ says Dustin Brown as tennis makes tentative return
Tennis took some exploratory steps into the post-coronavirus world with the Tennis Point Exhibition Series and Dustin Brown admits it was “a little surreal”.
The sport has been on a hiatus since the start of March due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ATP and WTA Tours are only expected to return on July 13.
However, exhibition tennis made a return on Friday with the Exo Tennis Series in Germany and Brown is the highest-profile player in the eight-player tournament.
It is a closed doors event without any spectators, line judges and ball kids while there are also no handshakes before or after matches.
“It’s nice to finally play, it’s a little surreal to be honest, with everything that is actually going on in the world,” he told Tennis Channel.
“With all the safety guidelines I think everyone has done pretty well, doing their best. Even sometimes when it’s not that easy. Very happy to be out here and have some fun.”
The indoor clay-court event, which is being streamed by the Tennis Channel, is played over a short format as it is first to four games with no advantage scoring.
Former world No 64 Brown helped to plan the format along with Base Tennis owner Rodney Rapson.
“There is not that much pressure,” Brown said. “It’s hard to get up and train when you don’t know when you can play so this event has definitely helped the mindset for the last couple of weeks, knowing something might happen.
“It’s been a little light at the end of the tunnel.”
The tournament will come to a conclusion on Monday with the playoffs before the next Exo Tennis event kicks off on May 7.
Novak Djokovic equals Roger Federer’s record of weeks as world number one
Djokovic is guaranteed to set a new mark next week.
David Goffin ends long wait for an ATP title with a win in Montpellier
David Goffin captured his first ATP Tour title for more than three years by winning the Open Sud de France in Montpellier.
Roger Federer sends his fans into a frenzy with Twitter post ahead of his return to action
Roger Federer fans are counting down to his return to action in Doha next week and his tweet teasing his return instantly became a big hit.
Iga Swiatek’s perfect week as she claims her second WTA title
Iga Swiatek won her second career WTA title with victory over Belinda Bencic in the final of the Adelaide International.
Jamie Murray says quarantine threat on tour means players must be ready to adapt
The doubles specialist plans to travel to tournaments in Mexico and Miami next month without knowing what to expect on arrival.
Battle of the Brits event is back and this time with spectators
The Battle of the Brits events were a huge success during the Covid-19 crisis and now they are set to return with spectators.
The only way is up for Naomi Osaka as she looks to replicate hard-court success on clay and grass
Oli Jefford on the world being Naomi Osaka’s oyster.
Britain’s strength in depth in doubles highlights quality of structure
British tennis may be wondering who can replace Andy Murray, but they have a very different story to tell in the doubles arena.
Rafael Nadal pulls out of his next event due to ‘ongoing’ back problem
Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from the ABN…
Lleyton Hewitt to be inducted into International Tennis Hall Of Fame
Former world No.1 Lleyton Hewitt is the latest player who will be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.