Stan Wawrinka: “The back is good. I had two days off with treatment” - UBITENNIS
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Stan Wawrinka: “The back is good. I had two days off with treatment”

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TENNIS ROLAND GARROS 2014 – Stan Wawrinka pre-tournament interview.

 

Q. You come into that Grand Slam as a Grand Slam champion. How has had a changed coming into this tournament.

STAN WAWRINKA: More press to do (smiling). But, no, it’s been great so far. You know, it’s more about my game. I’m really happy with the way I’m playing. I’m really confident for the tournament. I had good preparation, and I’m excited to play, to start the tournament.

I’m ready now, so we’ll see when I’m going to play.

 

Q. Just wondering how the back is feeling and physically how are you coming into this tournament?

STAN WAWRINKA: The back is good. I had two days off with treatment and arrive Wednesday here, first practice here Wednesday. I’m 100% fit. I’m really happy I’m playing good.

Physically I’m ready, and mentally also, so that’s why I’m happy and I’m excited to start.

 

Q. The title in Monte Carlo, how big was that in terms of your confidence for clay, specifically, coming into here?

STAN WAWRINKA: It was really big. Not only for clay but in general, you know, after winning Grand Slam it was important for me to win a Masters 1000. It was something really difficult, but I did it in Monaco, first tournament on clay against Roger, so it was even more special.

But for sure the confidence, that’s something big for me, to know that I can beat the top guys even on Masters 1000, on clay courts.

And now I’m ready for here. We’ll see. I had two quick loss in Madrid and Rome, but I’m okay. I was playing good tennis. I’m happy the way I’m playing in practice, and I know for me that’s the most important.

THE MODERATOR: Questions in French.

 

Q. I like Stanislas.

STAN WAWRINKA: Well, you can call me Stanislas.

 

Q. Why did you ask ATP to change your first name? Why should we say Stan and not Stanislas?

STAN WAWRINKA: Because everybody calls me Stan apart from you, and no, kidding. It’s just to simplify everything on the draw, my name during the press reference. That’s the only reason.

Of course I’m STAN WAWRINKA. That’s all right. Andy did it, as well. It’s to simplify the whole thing. That’s all. Nothing important.

 

Q. Well, you know, in terms of quick math, people say you’re the favorite here in Paris. How would you feel about this, to be the favorite?

STAN WAWRINKA: Well, it’s going on well, I must say. I have repeated this here and again. I’m one of the favorites. I understand this, by the way.

But I’m far behind Rafa and Novak. They are really above the other players. You know, when they are really on the courts they are difficult to fight against.

But I have played well. I won the Masters 1000 and a Grand Slam. I’m playing good tennis. I can win against all players.

But the way I look at this Grand Slam is not different. You know, I’m not looking where I am on the draw. It’s the first match, the first round, that counts. Who I’m going to play against, that’s how it starts, how you get started in the tournament.

 

Q. Apart from this Grand Slam title, which changes the whole deal, what’s the main difference between STAN WAWRINKA last year here in Paris and this year in terms of your tennis, in terms of your physical preparation?

STAN WAWRINKA: Well, I play better at a high level. My confidence mainly, it’s different. I know that whoever I’m going to play against, I can defeat them all.

It depends very much on me. Then, you know, at the end of the day, it’s small details that make the biggest differences in terms of rankings and results.

 

Q. Do you think you have become a model for all the outsiders on the tournament? Maybe you’re going to give other players some ideas about it.

STAN WAWRINKA: A model? Well, no. For sure no. But maybe I have given them ideas, that’s true. But, you know, it’s not because I have won this Grand Slam that the others will do the same. You know, it’s not by watching people play or win that you’re going to win yourself.

And yet I have shown that things are possible. It’s possible, yet it’s very difficult. It’s tough and complicated to go for it and fight against the best.

 

Q. Was it easy with these two losses in the last two tournaments? What about the days after Rome, the first few days after Rome?

STAN WAWRINKA: Well, no problem, you see, no big deal. I know why I lost these two matches, as I said, and also in Madrid. It was the first round. The other player played well, and I was not really there playing a good match.

It might happen, you see, but no problem as far as I’m concerned. During practice I play well. I do my best during the match. I fight hard. In Rome I was playing a very good tennis style before my back hurt. It might happen. You have to do with it.

Then I took a good rest and I practiced for the French Open and I practiced a lot this morning and well this morning. So I think I’m ready at a high level for this Open.

 

Q. You won the Australian Open, the Grand Slam. Would you look at this tournament differently psychologically, I mean? Because now, you know, people look at you differently on the courts or also off the courts.

STAN WAWRINKA: Yeah, I look at this Open differently. I had to adapt after Australia. When I’m here now, I know that I can go far. I have done that before. So the way I look at it is quite different.

Mentally speaking I have more confidence. Mentally I know what it takes, what I have to do to be ready. The way I start the tournament has not really changed. You know, I’m not looking at the draw too much because I know how difficult it is to last two weeks and to play five set matches.

So many things can happen.

And there is also the conditions, the weather, and you have to be ready from the first match.

Apart from the general aspect of the tournament, that is, I know I can have a good draw and go far and deep, but each match is a new challenge and you have to take them as they come.

 

Q. You are not saying you’re a favorite. How come? Is it because you feel there is too much pressure on your shoulders? Is it because you’re hiding away?

STAN WAWRINKA: (Smiling) Well, it’s reality, you know. You know, what I said is very clear. That is the favorites, there is Nadal and Djokovic. They are far above the rest.

You can tell me what you want. It’s always going to be the case. When they’re on the courts, nobody else can beat them.

You know, I’ll be with Rog just afterwards, just after them. I’m one of the favorites, but I wouldn’t said I’m the top favorite. I’m so far from Nadal, so far from Djokovic.

As I always say, these players are outstanding, they’re exceptional. But the difference is if I were to play against them, I know that when I’m on the courts I can defeat them.

It’s not because they are well above where I stand that I’m going to lose against them.

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Kei Nishikori In Doubt For The Australian Open

Asia’s highest ranked male tennis player is contemplating when he should return to the tour following surgery.

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Kei Nishikori (photo by chryslène caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

World No.13 Kei Nishikori is refusing to rule out the prospect of skipping the first grand slam event of 2020 as he continues his recovery from surgery.

 

Nishikori hasn’t played a match on the tour since his third round loss at the US Open back in September. A month later he underwent a procedure on his right elbow in a move that brought his season to an early end. Currently undergoing rehabilitation, it is unclear as to when the Japanese player believes he will return to the ATP Tour.

“The prospect of a return from surgery on right elbow in January. Maybe February. In the second half of next year I want to be able to play well.” Nikkan Sports quoted Nishikori as saying.
“I don’t want to overdo it,” he added.

The Australian Open will get underway on January 20th in Melbourne. Should he miss the grand slam, it will be the second time he has done so in the last three years. Nishikori also withdrew from the 2018 edition due to a wrist injury. In January he reached the quarter-finals and therefore has 360 points to defend next year.

During his time away from the court, the 29-year-old has been kept busy making changes to his team. Recently it was confirmed that he has started working alongside Max Mirnyi, who is a former world No.1 doubles player. Mirnyi, who has won 10 grand slam titles in men’s and mixed doubles, will be working full-time with Nishikori alongside existing coach Michael Chang.

“I’m getting closer to retirement. I want to be cured and come back to play good tennis in the second half of next year.” Nishikori stated.

Despite the injury setback, Nishikori has enjoyed success in 2019. Reaching the quarter-finals in three out of the four grand slam tournaments. The first time he has ever done that in his career. He also claimed his 12th ATP title at the Brisbane International. Overall, he won 29 out of 43 matches played.

Nishikori will turn 30 on December 29th.

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Family Of Venezuelan Doubles Star Launches GoFundMe Page For Cancer Treatment

Roberto Maytin was playing on the Challenger tour less than a month ago, but now faces a new battle.

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One of Venezuela’s highest ranked players on the ATP Tour is facing challenges off the court after being recently diagnosed with cancer.

 

Roberto Maytin, who currently has a doubles ranking of 136th, is undergoing treatment for testicular cancer Non-Seminoma. Non-seminomas are made up of different types of tumour, such as teratomas, embryonal tumours, yolk sac tumours and choriocarcinomas. Maytin’s brother Ricardo has launched a GoFundMe page to help cover the costs. The tennis player made $19,441 in prize money this season, which doesn’t factor into account numerous expenses such as travel, accommodation and paying for his coaching team.

“If life gives you a chance to live longer, I think nobody would miss the opportunity. In this plane, we all want to be (alive) for years however we forget that we are with a 50% chance of leaving at any time every day.” The fundraising page reads.
“My brother was diagnosed with testicular cancer NO Seminoma, at 30 years old. He now faces a crucial match that life has put him for growth as an individual, as a man and as an athlete. He is forced to undergo 4 stages of aggressive chemotherapy in order to heal at all and leave no trace of a Cancer that has been moving for months causing some damage.”

A former top 25 junior player, Maytin is one of only two players from his country to be ranked inside the top 200 in either singles or doubles on the men’s tour. This season he has won four Challenger titles across America. However, he has only played in one ATP Tour event since the start of 2018. He achieved a ranking high of 85th in the doubles back in 2015.

Once a student at Baylor University in Texas, Maytin formed a successful partnership with former world No.2 doubles player John Peers. Together they earned All-American honours with a win-loss of 36-5 and reached the quarter-finals of the 2011 NCAA tournament.

Maytin is also a regular fixture in his country’s Davis Cup team. Since 2007 he has played 15 ties and won 10 out of 16 matches played.

“I am also clear that the family is the gift of God for each one of us, so in this way and in whatever way I will put my desire and my energy so that my Brother Roberto Maytin, a Venezuelan professional tennis player, is back to the courts, which is where he belongs as soon as possible.”

Almost $25,000 has been raised so far to fund Maytin’s treatment. Click here to visit his GoFundMe page.

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John Newcombe Believes The Australian Open Will Be ‘A Big Ask’ For Nick Kyrgios

The tennis legend is unsure if the former top 20 player will be fit in time for the first grand slam of 2020.

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MADRID, SPAIN - Nick Kyrgios of Australia waking to the locked room Davis Cup by Rakuten Madrid Finals 2019 at Caja Magica on November 19, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Pedro Salado / Kosmos Tennis)

Former world No.1 John Newcombe has cast doubts on Nick Kyrgios’ chances of going deep in the draw at the upcoming Australian Open.

 

The 75-year-old, who won seven grand slam titles during the 1960s and 1970s, believes the injury-stricken world No.30 may struggle playing best-of-five matches in Melbourne. Kyrgios missed most of the final quarter of the 2019 season due to a shoulder issue. He returned to action last month at the Davis Cup, but skipped his country’s quarter-final clash with Canada due to a collarbone injury. Overall, he has won 23 out of 37 matches played this year.

“It’s a bit of a worry that he has recurring injuries, especially around where the muscles join the joints and that’s going to be an ongoing problem for him it seems,” Newcombe told The Age.
“At the Davis Cup he’d only played four sets of singles and his shoulder started to play up again and when you’ve got an injury like that it’s hard to go out and practice a lot.
“Leading into the Australian Open – five sets is a big ask for him.”

A two-time grand slam quarter-finalist, the 24-year-old has struggled to make his mark in the majors this year. Winning just three matches in three grand slam tournaments he played in. Kyrgios missed the French Open due to injury. At his home slam, he lost in the first round for the first time since making his main draw debut back in 2014.

As well as trying to get fit in time for the start of the new season, Kyrgios will continue to be playing under a probation on the ATP Tour for ‘aggravated behaviour.’ Should he violate that, he faces the prospect of a 16-week ban from the tour.

“I can’t speak for him but if it was me it would be tough having that ban hanging over you,” Newcombe said.
“But I guess you’ve just got to learn to zip up.”

Kyrgios is set to start 2020 at the inaugural ATP Cup, which is the only team event to have both prize money and ranking points available. After that, he is set to play in the Kooyong Classic in what will be his final test prior to the Australian Open.

“I am delighted that Nick has chosen to play Kooyong again, and hopefully it acts as the perfect tune up for his Australian Open (AO) campaign and sets him up for a massive 2020 season.” Tournament director Peter Johnson said in a statement.

So far in his career, Kyrgios has won six titles. Including Acapulco and Washington this year.

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