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"Haven't seen Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal since we arrived at the airport together" - Dominic Thiem's father on Adelaide quarantine

Dominic Thiem waves as he boards the bus after arriving in Adelaide
Dominic Thiem waves as he boards the bus after arriving in Adelaide
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 21 Jan 2021
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US Open champion Dominic Thiem has not seen his rivals Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal since arriving in Adelaide last week, according to his father Wolfgang Thiem.

The world's top players - Dominic Thiem, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka - are currently quarantining in Adelaide ahead of the Australian Open, which begins on 8 February. The six players will compete in an exhibition event 'A Day at the Drive' on 29 January, following which they will head to Melbourne for the first Major of the season.

Dominic Thiem is accompanied by his father Wolfgang Thiem, physiotherapist Alex Stober and practice partner Dennis Novak in Adelaide. The World No. 3 is, however, without coach Nicolas Massu, since the Chilean tested positive for COVID-19 shortly before he was scheduled to fly to Melbourne.

In a recent conversation Wolfgang Thiem revealed that the quarantine rules are pretty strict in Adelaide, and that the players are not allowed to interact with each other in any way.

"Every player is completely shielded, accommodated on their own floor," Wolfgang said. "We haven't seen Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal since we arrived at the airport together."

As per Wolfgang, the top three men's players in the world flew together from Barcelona to Adelaide, following which they proceeded separately to their hotels. Wolfgang added that they have not met any of the female players in Adelaide either.

Dominic Thiem's father on how the training blocks are organized in Adelaide

Dominic Thiem at the Nitto ATP Finals
Dominic Thiem at the Nitto ATP Finals

Wolfgang Thiem, who will captain the Austrian team at the ATP Cup next month, also asserted that each cohort is self-sufficient. He went to explain how the training blocks are organized for the top players in Adelaide so as to avoid any interaction between the groups.

"The training is divided into three sessions, the first from 7 AM to 12 PM, the second until 5 pm, and the third until 10 pm," Wolfgang said. "The time is used for the journey to the club, tennis training and fitness training."
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While Dominic Thiem is training alongside countryman Dennis Novak, Rafael Nadal has brought Italian teen Jannik Sinner into the bubble as his training partner. Novak Djokovic on the other hand has been practicing with fellow Serb and close friend Filip Krajinovic.

Wolfgang Thiem is unsure if the players in Adelaide would be allowed to train with others in the bubble during the second week of the quarantine. He has been given to understand that that would be completely dependent on the rules put in place by local officials and Tennis Australia.

Published 21 Jan 2021, 18:12 IST
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