Being stuck in quarantine ahead of the Australian Open has brought out the gamer in several tennis stars, including Dominic Thiem. The World No. 3’s close friend Dennis Novak recently revealed that he and Thiem are quite fond of Mario Kart - a video game that they have been playing regularly during their isolation period in Adelaide.
Dennis Novak is one of Dominic Thiem’s closest friends on tour, and they often spend a lot of time together at home in Austria and during events around the world. Novak recently broke into the top 100 of the ATP rankings and is currently ranked No. 99 in the world. Novak is also Thiem's training partner in Adelaide.
During a recent chat with Atptour.com, Dennis Novak revealed the characters that he and Thiem like to pick when playing Mario Kart - currently the only game that they play on the popular console Nintendo Switch.
“We (Dominic Thiem and Dennis Novak) play a lot of Mario Kart on Nintendo Switch,” Dennis Novak said. “That’s at the moment the only thing we play (on Nintendo Switch). I play with Baby Bowser and he takes Toad.”
Dennis Novak also revealed that Dominic Thiem is the person he is most in contact with during his ongoing quarantine. Given that they are such close friends even off the tour, that hardly comes as a surprise.
"Dominic (is the person I’m most in touch with)," Dennis Novak added. "(We keep in touch by) texting, playing games online against each other."
Dennis Novak also plays video games with Dominic Thiem’s brother Moritz
Dennis Novak has also carried his PlayStation with him to Australia, on which he plays a variety of games with Dominic Thiem’s younger brother Moritz.
“I also have a PlayStation with me,” Novak said. “I play with his brother (Moritz Thiem). We play Formula 1 and we have a few more games.”
With not many options in terms of daily activities at their disposal, the players quarantining in Australia have been limited to pastimes such as gaming, watching shows and movies, reading and doing in-room workouts. Dennis Novak is no different, as he mentioned having started a couple of new Netflix shows in addition to reading a few books about COVID-19.
"I just started a new show on Netflix, Shooter," Novak said. "I’m just really into it. I cannot stop. Also a French one, Lupin. But there is only one season out, so it’s only five or six episodes. For Shooter there are a lot more. I (recently) read two books about Covid, which were really interesting."