Australian players will face hard choices once the Open ends inside the COVID-safe bubble of Melbourne, with Lleyton Hewitt warning that playing in Europe from next month will be nothing like the current good times.

With a 14-day quarantine for all competitors done and dusted, life at Melbourne Park is almost back to normal, with the exception of mask-wearing in crowds and social distancing.

Life in the Victorian capital is also proceeding as before.

Spectator numbers of 30,000 per day are becoming a regular occurrence as the pre-Open tournaments continue this week while the main event begins next Monday.

But once players resume their Tour travels in Europe and the US, life will become a lot more complex and inconvenient, according to the former No. 1 and ATP Cup captain.

“The Tour is an individual sport on a global stage where you’re playing in different countries, to use your passport every single week to go into different places, get visas, the quarantine procedures in every single country are so different as well,” Hewitt told local media,

“It makes it really hard for the (Australian) guys to go off and try to compete for the whole year, possibly waste two weeks sitting in a hotel when he comes back (to his base in Brisbane) isn’t easy.”

Hewitt added: “But these guys want to get out there and compete and they’re willing to do the hard yards and make sacrifices for that.”


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