Ernests Gulbis: “I wouldn't like my sisters to become professional tennis players. It's tough choice of life” - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

ATP

Ernests Gulbis: “I wouldn't like my sisters to become professional tennis players. It's tough choice of life”

Avatar

Published

on

TENNIS 2014 ROLAND GARROS – 30th of May 204. E. Gulbis d. R. Stepanek 6-3, 6-2, 7-5. An interview with Ernests Gulbis

 

Q. This is the first time in 24 slams you made the second week.

ERNESTS GULBIS: First time in like seven years I have been in this room (laughter) as a participant, not a spectator.

 

Q. Does it feel like that long?

ERNESTS GULBIS: I’m back.

It is that long. Last time I was playing quarterfinal. That was when I was 18 years old.

 

Q. How pleased are you with the way you played today?

ERNESTS GULBIS: Today I’m very pleased. Today I served well. He had only one break point. Served, yeah, average, one to two aces a game. Any opponent is going to have trouble with that.

I was surprised he didn’t change up the return a little bit, but, yeah, the serve was working today, so that was the key.

 

Q. And the fact that you played a tournament and won and came in here, a lot of people think when you win a tournament the week before you’re going to be tired. But is having one day in between the matches the key?

ERNESTS GULBIS: It helps a lot. And also, I was a bit tired when I came here, you know, but I had a tough first set against Kubot. He played well, but I wasn’t just there, you know. It was good that I won the first round.

Every match basically has been better, better physically and better game wise. Today was the best match in this tournament.

 

Q. Why do you think it has taken you so long to be sitting in that chair again?

ERNESTS GULBIS: You know why (laughter).

 

Q. Well, maybe you just remind us, me.

ERNESTS GULBIS: Well, I did a lot of bad decisions career wise. Maybe not even just bad decisions, but just not paying too much attention to the things what I do, you know, not paying too much attention how to treat my body, how to practice, how to    just overall, you know. Whenever I was in practice, whenever I was on the court or in gym or in the track, I always work hard.

But the things around, surrounded that, the planning, too much up and down, not enough consistent work. Basically last two years it’s been more or less the most consistent work which I did.

Before that, you know, I had consistent, let’s say, three months of work, but then again something happened or I got sick or went to Latvia and took stupid ten days off, you know, by not doing completely nothing.

These kind of decisions, which were just wrong, you know. And now nobody even needs to tell me, tell me this, I know exactly what to do even in my days off, you know. That’s the biggest difference.

Yeah, thankfully it took me not longer time, you know. Basically I jumping in the last train. I’m 25, so this was my last opportunity to be really successful, I think, and I think I have good seven, eight more years to play in the top level.

 

Q. Lately, and especially today, you have been really focused from first point to last point, no outburst, no racquet smashing, no nothing. Have you worked on it, or is it just coming with the win and the confidence?

ERNESTS GULBIS: Just the way I play. You know, if I play like this, what kind of outburst can be there?

You know, I felt everything good today. You know, I felt physically well. I felt not so much pressure as first two rounds, because the first two rounds I was clearly the favorite. Against Radek, he’s experienced guy, of course I was also the favorite, but not so clearly. It takes a little bit the pressure out.

So I didn’t feel that much pressure. I felt relaxed. Next round if I play my chance, if I play Roger, it’s going to be even less pressure and I think I’m going to feel even less relaxed and play even better.

It’s always like this with me.

 

Q. When you think back to the times of bad decisions, do you regret that or do you think it’s something you needed to go through?

ERNESTS GULBIS: I don’t regret it at all, because I think in a way I’m in a better position. Maybe not as a tennis player but as a person. Because I have been through up and down.

Most of the guys who are on top now, they haven’t been a lot in down. They haven’t went back from playing quarterfinal from a Grand Slam asking for a wildcard in a challenger and not getting it, you know, playing qualifying in a challenger, you know.

And the attitude, how it changes a lot, from everybody, you know, from the working stuff, you know, from the tournament, from the referees, from everything, you know.

And I saw it. So now nothing can really, you know, blur my mind and my vision, you know. I’m not going to be now suddenly, you know, friends with everybody, you know.

I saw the tough picture, you know. People like success. You know, okay. So I know everything about it. So I think in a way I’m in a better position.

 

Q. You have two younger sisters that play tennis, as well. Are they going to be as good as you? When was the last time you played with hem?

ERNESTS GULBIS: Hopefully they will not pursue professional tennis career. Hopefully. Because for a woman, it’s tough. I wouldn’t like my sisters to become professional tennis players. It’s tough choice of life.

A woman needs to enjoy life a little bit more. Needs to think about family, needs to think about kids. What kids you can think about until age of 27 if you’re playing professional tennis, you know.

That’s tough for a woman, I think.

ATP

The Trial Has Ended: David Ferrer Is Now A Head Coach Of Alexander Zverev

The former French Open finalist is set to become a regular face on the men’s Tour once again but in a differnt capacity.

Avatar

Published

on

By

By Emil Evtimov

David Ferrer is the new head coach of Alexander Zverev alongside his father Alexander Sr. The news was revealed by the world No.7 after his win against Felix Auger-Aliassime at the Ultimate Tennis Showdown in Nice.

 

In the beginning of July Zverev announced that he and Ferrer will work together on a trial basis for two weeks in Monte Carlo. Now the German confirmed that the former world No.3 and Roland Garros finalist will be on his side as a coach at least until the end of the year. 

“The trial period is over. We are together. We understand each other great and now we are a team,” said Zverev.

Ferrer won’t be the first prominent name in team Zverev. Previously the three-time Masters 1000 champion worked with Juan Carlos Ferrero and Ivan Lendl. Since the end of his relationship with Lendl, Zverev has been trained mainly by his dad.

“David and my father are both my head coaches now. My dad doesn’t get any younger. Both are extremely important for the team.”

For Ferrer this will be the first coaching experience. His playing career ended in May 2019 during the ATP Masters 1000 in Madrid with his last opponent on the court being none other than Zverev.

For quite a long time Zverev was considered the big star from the young generation but in 2019 was a bit overshadowed by players such as Stefanos Tsitsipas and  Daniil Medvedev.

The German began 2020 with a great performance at the Australian Open reaching the semifinals where he lost to Dominic Thiem in four sets.

Zverev is on the entry list for the first tournament after the pandemic – the Western & Southern Open which will be staged in New York to create a “protective bubble” for the US Open. The 23-year old talks also about the Grand Slam tournament, saying he would prefer it not to happen, although he is going to play at this point.

“It is a bit crazy to play the US Open now. I would prefer if it would not happen and we just restart in Europe. Because of the pandemic it is not the right time to fly. But when they host the open – what shall we played do? Especially when everyone plays’ it is about ranking points, too. At this point I didn’t think about withdrawing. If everyone reacts within hygiene rules and it will be similar to the NBA bubble it could work out.”

Zverev was one of the tennis players most criticized for his behaviour during the pandemic. The reason was his participation in the Adria Tour where he and his colleagues weren’t following the social distancing rules very strictly. The German gave a negative test for COVID-19 after finding out about the positive test of Grigor Dimitrov. He promised to be in quarantine for safety reasons but was seen partying a few days after. This caused a criticism from Nick Kyrgios, as well as a Twitter war between the Australian and German legend Boris Becker.

Continue Reading

ATP

Stefanos Tsitsipas opens up: “I Wasn’t Sure If I Was Good Enough”

Stefanos Tsitsipas reflects on how hard it was in the beginning of his pro career.

Avatar

Published

on

By

BY EMIL EVTIMOV

 

In the latest instalment of “Behind the Racquet” world No.6 Stefanos Tsitsipas has shed light on the personal struggles he encountered whilst breaking into the sport.

Tsitsipas had a great 2019 season, climbing from N.15 to N.6 at the end of the year after winning the Nitto ATP Finals, as well as two ATP 250 tournaments in Estoril and Marseille. He also reached the final of the Madrid Open.

However, life wasn’t always so easy for the charming Greek. In his “Behind the Racquet” post, he recalls the times when he was playing Futures while doubting that he was good enough to play professional tennis. He admitted he was feeling “very lonely” and not having many friends on the ATP tour.

Here is the Tsitsipas story in the “Behind the Racquet”:

“In 2018, I broke into the Top 15 and was seeded in Grand Slams. That’s when I understood my potential. In the beginning, I traveled with only my dad. Now, I travel with my dad, mom, and three siblings. I’m the main source of income for my family. 

I have hobbies that keep me interested in different aspects of life. These activities keep me creative and are reflected in my tennis game and presence on court. Sometimes, I post things on my social media that not many people understand. These posts express my inner creativity. I’m just trying to be different from the rest. I put Stefanos’ twist on life. I am philosophical, I come from a country with a history of philosophy and I don’t know if I was Pythagoras or Socrates in my previous life, but I wouldn’t mind being either one. 

There was a time when I wasn’t doing well. I started to play futures and was doubting myself. I wasn’t sure if I was good enough to play professional tennis. My country was going through hard times. Greece was on the verge of bankruptcy. The entire population was suffering. My father’s siblings were unemployed and couldn’t feed their families. People looked at me like I was the one ruling the country and they thought I was part of the problem. 

I felt isolated. I wasn’t home to see what was going on because I was traveling. I needed support. My mental coach shared his wisdom and inspired me. Then I said to myself, ‘You’ve dedicated your entire life to tennis, you can’t just give up. You’ve got to keep going.’ I play tennis to prove that my country has a great history and can achieve success. Tennis is a very introverted sport and we face everything alone. We have a team that follows us all over the world but I have spent countless sleepless nights on my own. All the traveling and competing causes a lot of stress and I grew very lonely.

I was an introverted child and I didn’t have many friends. When I first started playing on tour, I thought I would develop friendships but it turned out to be the opposite. Most players keep to themselves. I feel like players don’t want to become friends because they think someone will grab a secret from you to beat you. I guess they’re just too serious about the whole thing. Friends would make traveling less lonely.”

Continue Reading

ATP

Roger Federer enjoys calm year ahead of the 2021 season

Avatar

Published

on

Twenty-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer is happy to enjoy a calm year ahead of the 2021 season. The Swiss legend admitted in an interview to Sportpanorama on the Swiss channel SRF 2 that he has not started his preparation for the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo, where he will be bidding to his first Olympic singles gold medal. 

 

Federer started the 2020 season with a semifinal at the Australian Open. He saved seven match points in his five-set quarter final against Tennys Sandgren before losing to Novak Djokovic in the semifinal. Last February he underwent arthroscopic surgery for a right knee injury and ended the 2020 season to give time to his body to recover. 

“I have not started mental preparations for the Tokyo Olympics. When you have been on the tour for 20 years, you are happy to have a more calm year. We have so many matches and competitions that whenever you take a break you know that someone else is winning in that time. That’s why it is extremely difficult to say. I take a break. Everyone is now forced to have a break and I think that 90% of the players are thinking: fortunately I can have a break. Tennis is constant and nonstop. You could not really prepare for Tokyo as there would have been 20 tournaments before. They are also very important, even though maybe not as important as the Olympics, which have another significance. We have many big events. That’s why the preparation just starts three months in before. You have the block in tennis with French Open, Wimbledon and Olympic Games. It depends on which surface it is even though in tennis it’s classic on hardcourt in Tokyo. Everyone can play on hardcourt, but you have to specially prepare for clay and grass”, said Federer. 

Federer has enjoyed spending time with his family in the past few months. 

“For the first time in twenty years I have been at one place for five and six years. Of course I enjoy it. We have been incredibly careful and have not seen my parents and friends. We took everything serious which is the right way as it’s not been over yet. That’s why I did not do any interviews and keep distance in everything I do. That’s very important for us. When you are having an injury you can’t do much anyway and have more calm moments at home. You don’t have the stress of the next competition and match, you don’t have nerves, you don’t have the strain from travelling and having a jet-leg, you are not tired. You can enjoy your family life way more”. 

Federer hopes that the Olympic Games in Tokyo will take place in 2021. The Swiss Maestro will be bidding to win his first olympic singles gold medal after the title he won with Stan Wawrinka in the doubles tournament in Beijing 2008. 

“Unfortunately I was injured in Rio and now the Games were postponed, I had the feeling I always took a lot with me away from the Olympic Games. First to be part of it, then with the goal to get a medal, maybe even a Gold one. That’s a completely differerent situation how you enjoyed the Olympic Games. I am curious how Tokyo will be. I hope it will take place. We are one year away but there are voices who say: maybe it’s too early until we have everything under control. I am hopeful all will be good. I think I can speak for both of us when I say that in our position is a goal, otherwise you wonder why you even go there in the first place. I think something is possible. Whether this will be in singles, doubles or mixed. I don’t know yet what I am going to play. I think I would have a chance in singles. At a tournament everything is possible. It’s another story over a whole season but at one tournament many things are possible. At the situation I am in right now i have to honestly say that I would be glad to participate. When I am 100% fit I would be happy to get a medal. When I won’t have one, I would be disappointed but I know that I gave everything and I can look proudly. Tokyo has been great. It was another experience and I could participate at another Olympic Games. My family will be with me just like in London. It’s already a success for me when I am at 100% and can participate, but a medal should be the goal”, said Federer. 

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending