When did Stefanos Tsitsipas decide to become a tennis player?
According to his father Apostolos, Stefanos Tsitsipas decided to become a tennis player after winning a junior tournament in France when he as 11-years-old.
The elder Tsitsipas recalled how his son was desperate to make it as a tennis professional having fallen in love with the sport.
Apostolos remains his son’s coach to this day and he says that he knew Stefanos would be a special player.
“I remember we were in the North of France in Normandy, and he won a masters. He asked to participate in a junior French tour, and he won the masters of four tournaments. He was one of eight best players and he won the masters,” Apostolos Tsitsipas recalled.
“I remember the night before we flew back to Greece, he was not sleeping. He was super excited and he came to me and asked me if he could play only tennis and [not] do anything else in his life, because he feels really great [on] the tennis court.”
His father has set out to head his coaching team and ensure his son had the best guidance possible.
“I believe one day telling the opinion like this, it’s exactly what they have inside them,” Tsitsipas said.
“So my difficulty actually was to manage to bring the best out of him from this dream and this will he had to play tennis.”
The senior Tsitsipas believes that having most of his family on the tour with him, gives Stefanos an advantage over other players who can find that the tour is incredible lonely.
“During his career, it’s very important [for] the parents to be around, because it’s a very hard life, traveling. It’s really hard week after week traveling. At some point he starts losing [and that is] orientation of what’s happening in life,” Tsitsipas said.
“But if the family is around — like it’s proved this week, when all the family is here, because we now live in the South of France — for him [it] was much more comfortable, it feels like home. That gives him extra strength, I believe.”
He admits that his biggest worry about his son’s career was the elbow injury he suffered in 2021.
Apostolos feared that he wouldn’t be the same player after rehab but he enjoyed another successful season in 2022 and also made th Australian Open final to start the 2023 campaign.
“I didn’t know really that it was so hard for him. He was telling me after Torino or Nitto [ATP] Finals that [it was] feeling very painful,” Tsitsipas said.
“We decided to make a surgery. It was very successful, and now he’s pain-free and I’m very happy for that.”
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