“Took a Toll for Me to Adjust”: Victoria Azarenka Unhappy With Australian Open 2021 Quarantine Rules

Published 02/09/2021, 11:29 AM EST
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 9, 2021 Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka reacts during her first round match against Jessica Pegula of the U.S. REUTERS/Jaimi Joy


In the first round of the 2021 Australian Open, Victoria Azarenka lost to Jessica Pegula in straight sets. Considering that the Belarusian played so well last year, this loss came as a huge surprise to fans.

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Before the event, the World No. 13 was quarantined due to the coronavirus pandemic and many wondered whether this impacted her performance in Melbourne. In the post-match interview, Azarenka answered this question and said,

“I think the biggest impact personally has been not being able to have fresh air and that really took a toll. It took a toll for me to adjust…I don’t know how to prepare after two weeks quarantined, to play in 6 days. I don’t have a blueprint of how to prepare so it’s all about trying to figure it out and I did not figure it out.”

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Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 9, 2021 Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka leaves the court to receive medical attention during her first round match against Jessica Pegula of the U.S. REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

Victoria Azarenka on Whether She Should Have Played the Australian Open

Clearly, Azarenka was not happy about the quarantine rules. This is why, in the interview, she was asked how she reflects on her decision to come and play the Australian Open. She replied,

“I don’t reflect, I am not going sit here, and should I have come, should I have not come. It’s a waste of time. I came here, whatever happened happened, I’m here today, I lost my match and life goes on. That’s it.”

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Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 9, 2021 Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka during her first round match against Jessica Pegula of the U.S. REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

The loss in Melbourne was very disappointing for Azarenka as she had just returned to form. She reached the final of the US Open in 2020 and was looking good to win big titles this year.

Despite this, all hope is not lost for the Belarusian. There are still many more Grand Slams left in 2021 and hopefully, we will see her win her first Major since 2013 at one of them.

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Rishi Karthikeyan

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