de Minaur: ‘Time to focus on tennis, not Novak’

Australia’s top-ranked males’s participant, Alex de Minaur, is primed to go deeper than earlier than at subsequent week’s Australian Open

Alex de Minaur needs the Australian Open to be about tennis once more fairly than the Novak Djokovic circus.

Australia’s No.1 males’s participant was once more drowned in Djokovic questions on Saturday forward of his first-round conflict with Italian teenager Lorenzo Musetti.

After politely answering the primary bunch, de Minaur delivered a line that left little question about his ideas on how the world No.1’s anti-vax stance and visa standing had impacted the event.

“This whole situation has taken a lot of spotlight away from us competitors,” he mentioned.

“We’re here to play the Australian Open. We’re here on our own terms, ready to compete and hopefully have a very good couple of weeks.

“It feels like it’s taking away from us competitors, who just want to start. We’re eager to go out and compete.

“The Australian Open is always an incredible event, my home slam, my favourite tournament.

“To be honest, I’m just ready to put all of this behind me and focus on playing my tennis matches and kind of let my tennis do the talking.”

De Minaur actually did that finally week’s ATP Cup in Sydney, the place he defeated world No.7 Matteo Berrettini and proficient Frenchman Ugo Humbert to dispel any lingering doubts about his type.

The 22-year-old received solely 5 of his final 17 matches final 12 months after successful the Eastbourne title on grass forward of Wimbledon, together with his mid-year Covid-19 prognosis a major consider that.

Three-set losses to tour stars Alex Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas have been wedged between uncompetitive showings towards countryman Alexei Popyrin, Nikoloz Basilashvili and Brandon Nakashima.

That’s why de Minaur mentioned the ATP Cup rebound was “very important” as he tries to transcend the third spherical at Melbourne Park for the primary time.

“It’s no secret that last year I had a little bit of a slump after Covid (in July),” he mentioned.

“I didn’t have the results I wanted to and confidence-wise, I was a bit low.

“I felt as soon as I was able to kind of put that year behind me, even Davis Cup (in December), I was able to really turn a corner both mentality-wise and kind of confidence-wise.

“I was able to have two battles out there. I was able to bring out a part of me that I had forgotten about for a while … it’s just great to see the hard work paying off at the ATP Cup.”

De Minaur even in contrast the trials and tribulations of life on the court docket to that off it – however mentioned there have been “only positive vibes” getting into this season, persevering with with Musetti subsequent week.

“It’s going to be a tough match. He’s a quality young guy (who has) a lot of weapons,” he mentioned.

“I’ve got to try and focus on my side of the court and do everything I’ve been doing as of late. Hopefully, I can come out and play some good tennis.”

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