Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 8, 2021 Germany’s Angelique Kerber in action during her first round match against Bernarda Pera of the U.S. REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake MELBOURNE – Former champion Angelique Kerber made an early exit from the Australian Open on Monday and said spending two weeks in hard quarantine ahead of the Grand Slam had contributed to her first-round loss. The German former world number one was one of 72 players who were unable to leave their rooms to train during quarantine after passengers on their flights to Melbourne tested positive for COVID-19. Her opponent Bernarda Pera was not among that cohort and the American ousted the 2016 Australian Open champion 6-0 6-4 in little more than an hour on the first morning of the tournament. “Of course, you feel it if you are not the hitting ball for two weeks and you are not in the rhythm,” Kerber told reporters after her earliest exit from Melbourne Park for six years. “I was really trying to staying positive and doing the best out of the two-week situation but you feel it, especially if you play one of the first matches in a Grand Slam … against an opponent who didn’t stay in the hard lockdown.” Kerber congratulated Australia on its success in containing the new coronavirus and said she had enjoyed playing in front of fans again, however briefly. The 33-year-old thought, however, that she might have reconsidered the long trip to Australia if she had known she would have to remain locked in her room for 14 days. “When I look back, of course I was not planning the two weeks in hard quarantine,” she added. “I don’t know, maybe if I knew that before to stay really two weeks in the hard quarantine without hitting a ball, maybe I would think twice about that.” For more news about the novel coronavirus click here. What you need to know about Coronavirus. For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150. The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link . Read Next Don't miss out on the latest news and information. Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000. For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.
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