© Andrew Eichenholz/ATP Tour

Felix Auger-Aliassime poses for a portrait during the 2019 Coupe Rogers, an ATP Masters 1000 held in his hometown, Montreal.

Felix Auger-Aliassime: 'We Have To Face It All Together'

#NextGenATP Canadian pens an exclusive blog from his home in Montreal

I hope you all are doing well and staying safe during this pandemic.

I’m not used to being away from the courts for this long. It’s almost like what happens when you’re dealing with an injury, but I’m not actually hurt.

The good thing is I’m holding up well. My spirits are good. Luckily everyone in my family is healthy. My grandparents are good, everyone is healthy. I’m happy about that. But I know it’s not the same for all the families out there, unfortunately, especially for grandparents and older people.

I haven’t slowed down on my fitness, and I am keeping up with my routines. As tennis players, we don’t have many months to train and to get better physically, so I’m taking this time to do that. I can stay active and keep getting better, which is good. There’s never a day when you can’t improve somehow. In every aspect of my life, personal or professional, I try to do things better and move forward in the right direction.

I’m also making sure I take enough time to rest and spend time with my family. My days have been busy, that’s for sure.

Our family rarely has opportunities to be together for such an extended period because of my career. It’s probably going to go on for weeks and months more, so it’s good to feel like it’s back in the day when I was a kid, spending time with my sister and parents.

We’re playing board games, having long discussions. Usually I’d need to go to sleep early because I have a match or training the next day. Now since I’m doing things on my own schedule and I can create more time, we are able to gather for longer dinners, and board games. I’ve been playing some Scrabble with my sister and mom, so that’s good, and it’s definitely bringing out my competitive side.

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My sister beat me by one point the last time we played and that was pretty frustrating! Even though I’m not on court, I need to find a way to be competitive in some part of my life. I beat my mom by a few points the other day, so the games have been pretty tight. It’s been a lot of fun.

I’ve been able to reflect a bit on the first few months of the season, what I would do differently and what I would not do differently; what I’ve been good with, and not as good. I’ve had time to call my coaches and analyse a few matches, which is also keeping me busy. But at the same time, I try not to look at the past too much. I like to stay patient and focus on what I do every day to get better.

It’s a crazy time, and I think everyone is realising that the world is taking a break. It’s kind of a forced break for us. We’re pushing our world to the limit, and now with how fast the virus has spread, we’re seeing that a problem in one country is everyone’s problem.

I think everyone is realising that it’s a time to stay apart, stay home, but also to unite in our actions. Whatever we do from now on is going to affect everyone else’s lives. It’s not just governments that are realising this, it’s everybody.

This virus is affecting everyone. We’re all facing the same problem. We have to face it all together as one world united, and hopefully this will bring everyone together.

- as told to Andrew Eichenholz