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The Start, The End, The Beginning… All In One Day! Day 24 at the Australian Open with Tennis Coach Sven Groeneveld

By Sven Groeneveld


Today was the day for the start of the Australian Open. More than 4 weeks ago we started this journey with the qualifying in Doha Qatar for AO 2021. After more than 2 weeks of Hard Lockdown plus a week to prepare and all of that has come to an end for not only Atari but 64 male and Female players.

Never before has this been done and many lessons can be learned. Some of the players will have scares either physically or emotionally. However, there are also those that will walk away with great pride and muscles that have become stronger. The muscles of flexibility, adaptability, experience, knowledge, and many more great experiences which will last a lifetime. Because of all of this is a privilege and we embrace and get stronger along the way. Yesterday was the end of the road for this AO but a great base to prepare for what is still ahead of us.

Before today’s match started I needed to scout the potential opponent on Margret Court Arena. The rules are so strict these days that we must get a digital ticket in order to enter and have a track record for the Covid track and trace protocols.

The extent in which Tennis Australia has gone to make this event take place is far beyond what anybody imagined. Not just for safety but also for service. Where spectators can enjoy their day at the tennis.

17,000 plus spectators on the grounds today! Which is an absolute miracle! They can have 30,000 spectators a day but for now, people are not embracing the event like we had hoped for. After the first 2 days, 50% of the draw is eliminated so hopefully today more people will come.

Since the tournament is held much later than usual, the summer school holidays are over. Yesterday I did not see any kids on the ground except the Ball Girls and Boys.

It does make Tennis Australia’s argument stronger that they need to be held in the 3rd week of January because of the impact it has on attendance.

I want to say thank you for keeping me company for all of these days and accompanying me on my Australian journey. (There is still a small chance Taro might get into the doubles but we will find out over the next two to three days!

So Today our preparations will start for the next phase of the year and tournament in Singapore. We will stay in Melbourne until next week to make use of the facilities and great hospitality of Tennis Australia!

Sven Groeneveld