In a Facebook Live with the International Hall of Fame, former world no. 1 Andy Roddick spoke about his ‘Starbucks match’ as well as what he did wrong during his career.
The 37-years-old American is considered to be one of the best tennis players to ever step on the tennis court. Roddick became world number 1 in the ATP Ranking already in 2003 when he had won his first and only Grand Slam title at the 2003 US Open. In 2009, he faced Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final, and now he said:
“The Royal Box, in terms of the calibre of former players who were there to witness that for Roger. I said that I felt like the guy who was trying to shoot Bambi that day,” Roddick joked. “You walk out and see Sampras is there, and you know he’s there because he and Roger both have 14 Grand Slam titles. You certainly feel the weight of the moment. If you’re lucky as a tennis player, you have that moment where you go into any Starbucks and people want to know more about it. That’s my Starbucks match. [Winning] the US Open is not [and] finishing No. 1 [in the ATP Rankings] is not.”
Roddick also spoke about what Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal changed in tennis. The American thinks that if he would have done some things differently, he would be able to play longer.
“If I got hurt and they said you’re out for six weeks, I’d always try to get back after three or four weeks. If you look at the precedent that Roger and Rafa have set, where they’re only going to play when they’re ready and completely healthy, trying to peak at certain times. They put on their blinders and decide what’s best for them. I think I was probably a little bit too insecure in my own ability to sit on the sidelines and try to time it well,” admitted Roddick. “I think I would have been able to play a bit longer if I paced myself with training and been a bit smarter about scheduling.”
“When you retire, everyone in your tennis orbit goes into their next thing, whether it’s family or some of them coming back to the Tour,” Roddick said. “Having an excuse to get everyone back together, having beers and playing ping-pong the night before with everyone who helped you along the way, is probably one of my favourite memories.”
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Author: Erik Virostko