Stefanos Tsitsipas is finding COVID-era life on the ATP something of a struggle, as the Greek fourth seed begins another week of near-lockdown at the Monte Carlo Masters.
The three-time Grand Slam semi-finalist will be competing in the traditional prestige start to the European clay season for the third time, having never gone past the third round.
But pandemic precautions which keep players in a bio-bubble for tournament after tournament – usually without spectators – is becoming a huge drain on the sensitive right-hander who is evolving into the Renaissance Man of tennis.
The avid filmmaker and social media fan admitted he didn’t see all the restrictions coming.
“In the beginning (2020) I thought it was going to be relatively easy, and I wouldn’t suffer as much,” he said on Sunday.
“But it (quarantine tournament life) ended up being difficult and psychologically excruciating.
“I’m happy we are heading towards a direction that is going to show something better. There will be solutions very soon.
“I’m sure the governing bodies and ATP will do a great job on protecting the players and making the best out of it to have the tour come back to normality and have players feel comfortable and have the atmosphere come back.”
Tsitsipas, coached by father Apostolis, said the lack of consistent human contact during tournaments is a big minus.
“Being kept away from human interactions and ease of traveling made it very difficult,” he said.
“But I do believe we’re going to see a change soon. I can’t wait for this to happen, for all of us to be able to get back to normal conditions of tennis.”