Alexei Popyrin: Tour suspension made me realize how much I actually love tennis



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Alexei Popyrin: Tour suspension made me realize how much I actually love tennis

Rising Australian star Alexei Popyrin, 20, enjoys spending time with his family but he can't wait for the tennis season to resume. The plan was to resume the season on June 8 but then the ATP extended the suspension of the men's professional Tour until at least July 13 due to the coronavirus outbreak.

"That’s one of the positives that comes out of this virus, that I get to spend more time with my family,” Popyrin told Todd Woodbridge from his home in Nice, per Tennis Australia. “We found the Monopoly game in the closet.

It’s in French, so we have to use Google Translate on every card." Popyrin, ranked at No. 103 in the world, made a solid start to the season as he made the third round at the Australian Open for the second consecutive year.

The 20-year-old fought well against world No. 5 Daniil Medvedev but that wasn't enough for him to stun the Russian in front of his home fans and advance to his first Grand Slam round-of-16. Then in his next four tournaments played, the Australian lost his opener in Montpellier and failed to make it past the qualifying events in Rotterdam, Marseille and Dubai.

"I miss tennis so much. I really just want to get back out and compete,” Popyrin claimed. “It’s showed me how much I actually love the sport … it gives me extra incentive to get back out there and work harder”.