Argentine Diego Schwartzman said on Sunday he had to think long and hard before overcoming uncertainty and flying to the US for the current pair of COVID-impacted tournaments.
The ninth seed reached the second round over Norway’s Casper Ruud 7-6(2), 6-3 at the “Cincinnati” Masters and the US Open to follow – both being staged in New York at the Flushing Meadows venue.
“It was very difficult for me and for many people who are not in America,” he said. “It was not easy to come here from Argentina.
“We have just one flight per week, and 20 days before Cincinnati, we didn’t know if the tournament was going to happen.”
But in the end, tennis won out for South America’s Pocket Rocket who upset Alexander Zverev at last year’s US Open.
“I was practicing for more than two months, and I was just thinking about playing a tournament again and nothing else.”
The Argentine said that players had to struggle for information about whether the event would actually proceed.
“The communication and many things were not really good. I know the situation, it’s really, really tough, and nobody is in the situation to say, Okay, this is going to happen or not.
“Every week is changing with COVID, so it’s not easy. Nobody is in an easy position. I was really surprised that many, many guys – more than 90 per cent of the guys are here.
“So far everything, it’s going on and it’s nice for us.”