Wawrinka back on court after having enjoyed "forced break" from tour

Wawrinka back on court after having enjoyed "forced break" from tour

"I loved this period. It allowed me to spend a lot of time with my daughter, to go to school with her, to enjoy being at home, calm down, to establish a routine," the three-time major champion said.

Stan Wawrinka is back on the practice court and looking forward to playing tournaments again, but the three-time Grand Slam champion acknowledged that he's enjoyed his break from tour.   

Interviewed by L'Illustre magazine, Wawrinka described some of the benefits of being home during lockdown.

"I loved this period," he said. "It allowed me to spend a lot of time with my daughter, to go to school with her, to enjoy being at home, calm down, to establish a routine. These weeks at home have done me a lot of good."

Wawrinka, whose daughter Alexia is 10, was also sidelined following double knee surgery in 2017, but says that unlike then, he hasn't been in a hurry to get back to playing.

"I need the competition and its emotions. But here, everyone was on a forced break," he said. "It is completely different from an injury, where you stop all at once and everyone else keeps playing. It's very calming."

Wawrinka has been training again, though is keeping his plans flexible—imperative when circumstances are changing daily. The ATP tour was due to resume August 14, but has been delayed further after the Citi Open in Washington, D.C. was canceled Tuesday.

"I have chosen to plan my program according to this date," he said. "As athletes, we are used to adapting... We change every week the city, the surface, the tournament, the hours, the playing conditions."

The former No. 3 fell outside the Top 200 during his return from knee surgery, and says he's been happy with his comeback, even if he hasn't returned to his previous heights. The 35-year-old brought on Dani Vallverdu as coach alongside Magnus Norman.

"I reached the Grand Slam quarters twice and returned to the Top 15," he said. "Personally, I was quite satisfied with my performance, considering what I had just gone through."

Wawrinka's Instagram stories suggest he is planning to stay in Europe and not travel to the U.S., which now only boasts a two-event swing at Flushing Meadows, the Western & Southern Open and US Open, after Washington's cancellation. Among his recent uploads included showing off a set of tennis balls marked Roland Garros 2020, along with a sweaty hitting session on red clay at the Monte Carlo Country Club.