EXCLUSIVE – Daniela Hantuchová on why tennis has shocked her in 2020 and who will win the ATP Finals
In part two of our exclusive interview with former world No 5 Daniela Hantuchová, we look at this week’s ATP Finals and reflect on a tennis year like no other.
Have you been surprised by the quality of tennis we have seen in 2020, with Covid restrictions changing so much in the sport in recent months?
In many ways, I feel the changed environment has inspired the players. They were so grateful to have the opportunity to play that it has transferred into them showing great joy on the court.
That is why we are seeing so many incredible matches. The players are putting so much into getting out there that when we see them on court, they have even more motivation to give their all.
Are you surprised by how much tennis we have managed to get on in the second half of this year?
For sure. I didn’t expect we would get as much tennis as we have seen in 2020. When everything shut down in March, it looked like we might not see too much tennis for the rest of the year, but the ATP and the WTA deserve so much credit for getting some events on and we have managed to get to the end of the year with an ATP Finals.
Not many of us are able to watch live tennis right now, so how does it feel to be at the 02 Arena this week with Amazon Prime?
It is a privilege to have any kind of live sport at this moment in our lives, so we are all grateful to be allowed to be at the 02 Arena watching the tennis this week. Obviously, it is a big shame that we don’t have a crowd at this event as it is always one of the best events of the year when we get big crowds in London, but we have the best players and we have to be grateful for that.
Will we have a greater appreciation for live sport when we come out of this Covid-19 crisis?
I think so. I felt like this at Ronald Garros. I was just so happy to be there, seeing live sport. We all felt lucky to be a part of that event and hopefully in 2021, things can get better. Hopefully, we can have Wimbledon next year, hopefully we find a way to get the Australian Open played. It is tough but these vaccines may be the way out for all of us.
Who is your favourite to win the ATP Finals this week?
Novak Djokovic has a little bit of an edge this week, but he is only a slight favourite with all the top eight players all here and ready to go. Rafa Nadal beat Novak last time, but that was on clay outdoors so I don’t think that will impact the match if he plays Djokovic in the ATP Finals, but you can see that Rafa is super hungry to get this title he is missing from his collection. Then you have (Daniil) Medvedev and Dominic Thiem, so we should have a great week of tennis.
Amazon Prime members in the UK and Ireland will have exclusive access to live tennis coverage from the Nitto ATP Finals 2020, from Sunday 15th to Sunday 22nd November and Daniela’s Real DNA podcast can be found HERE
Roger Federer makes a surprise appearance as Laver Cup gets underway
Casper Ruud and Matteo Berrettini gave Team Europe a lead as the Laver Cup got under way in Boston.
Explainer – Why Emma Raducanu did not get automatic entry to Indian Wells event
Emma Raducanu has not gained automatic entry to the Indian Wells Masters event next month.
Dominic Thiem responds after media snipes from his former physio
Dominic Thiem has issued a statement after he confirmed he has split with members of his backroom staff after a challenging 2021.
Big change in Emma Raducanu’s camp as she seeks to make key appointment
Raducanu is preparing to make big changes to the team she will be working with after confirming she is on the look-out for a new coach.
Emma Raducanu to be given ‘homecoming’ broadcast to toast her US Open win
The Lawn Tennis Association are set to give Emma Raducanu the welcome home she deserves.
Exclusive – Assessing Novak Djokovic’s legacy with one of the game’s leading writers
Novak Djokovic has always been fighting a losing battle in a popularity contest with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Emma Raducanu could secure a place in lucrative end-of-season WTA finals
Raducanu could be on course to secure a remarkable place in the lucrative end-of-season WTA finals in Mexico.
Andy Murray eyeing up leap in the rankings after another win in Metz
Murray is one win away from a return to the top 100 in the ATP rankings.
Emma Raducanu confirms first sponsorship deal and plenty more will follow
The sponsorship opportunities are rolling in for…
‘Winning is what sport is all about’ – Andy Murray reacts to one of his best wins of 2021
The former world number dispatched the home favourite favourite 4-6 6-3 6-2.