Why Don’t Tennis Legends’ Children Follow in Their Footsteps?

In football there are Johan and Jordi CruyffCaesar and Paul Maldinithe Manolos SanchisPeter and Kasper SchmeichelCarlos and Sergio Busquets and a few more. Joe and Kobe stand out in basketball BryantDell y Stephen CurryArvydas y Domantas Sabonis. In the motor world, Michael and Mick stand out SchumacherKeke and Nico Rosbergthe Carlos Sainz or the Kennys Roberts. In boxing they are Muhammad and Laila Aliwhile in handball the example of the Dujshebaevs can be given. And in tennis? Why are there no cases of parents and children who have shone in the sport of racket?

This family inheritance so common in other sports has practically no examples in the world of tennis. Nobody knows anything about a second generation of the Agassi, Sampras, Connors, Lendl, Becker and company. And everything indicates that we will not see something similar with the children of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. There are cases, yes, like those of Christian and Casper Ruud, Petr and Sebastian Korda or Hana and Elizabeth Mandlik, but far from the spotlight of the big stars.

There are several factors that explain this very special situation in tennis. The main one is that it is one of the sports – if not the most – in which there is the greatest meritocracy. In football or basketball, even in cycling, you can have a sponsor or a good agent who moves you between the best clubs. Being a “son of”, in addition, usually opens doors for you: a coach who raises you in category, a representative who finds you a new team in search of minutes… in tennis there is none of that. It is true that having a good last name helps you get sponsors and invitations to events, but in the end, being an individual sport, there is no bench to hide in and your position in the ranking and in tournaments depends on yourself.. That is a huge barrier.

“I would prefer that I play another sport, if I’m honest. But it hurts me to say that because with everything that sport has given me…”

Rafael Nadal On his son’s future

And then there is the toughness of the sport itself. People usually keep the money that the big stars earn, with the titles and the pretty photographs, but the daily life of any tennis player is radically different from that of other mainstream athletes such as soccer players, basketball players or even golf. . Team athletes – with few exceptions such as World Cups or continental championships – sleep practically every day at home. The life of a tennis player is going from tournament to tournament, from hotel to hotel, from plane to plane, far from family. Without knowing how much you are going to charge and being aware that you can travel to the other side of the world and your participation lasts one or two hours. And that is the luckiest thing: because thousands and thousands of players who dream of being professional tennis players are left on the doorstep after an enormous financial investment.

All this means that many tennis players do not want their children to emulate them. Nadal, who became a father in October 2022, was the last to speak out in that regard. “I would prefer that I practice another sport, if I’m honest. But it hurts me to say that because with everything that sport has given me… If he wants to play tennis, I would support him 100 percent, I would not veto him at all,” said the 22-time Grand Slam champion in an interview with El Objective, the program presented by Ana Pastor on La Sexta.

Agassi, Graf, Federer…

Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf form one of the most famous couples in tennis history. Between the two of them they have 30 Grand Slam titles and their children, Jaz and Jaden, have tennis inevitably in their DNA. But both Agassi and Graf never wanted their lives for themselves. “Tennis? I think we’ve had enough. I believe it from my heart. Where else do you talk to yourself so much and respond so much to yourself? It is a very lonely sport. There’s no one to talk to, no one to pass the buck to,” Agassi said in a 2011 interview.

“‘Hard’ may be a strong adjective, because it is hard to get up at four in the morning to go to work. Our life is very beautiful, but there are a thousand difficulties. You are alone, far from home and friends, trips , tiredness, time differences”

Fabio Fognini Former top-10

Roger Federer, father of two sets of twins, spoke in 2016 about the future of his children. “We’re trying to get them to play a little bit, although I don’t think we’ll see them here one day. In fact, I would be happy if they don’t end up on the track. Forty years on the tennis circuit is not something that excites me“said the former Swiss number one.

One of the tennis players who has spoken most clearly on the subject has been Carla Suárez. The former Spanish top-10 became the mother of two girls in June 2023 and, in a recent interview with Relevo, she assured that she does not want her life for her daughters. “I would like them to learn to play, but I wouldn’t like them to dedicate themselves to it because I think it is a hard sport. They will decide it. “If they are dedicated, I would like them both to arrive, to go hand in hand and not to leave one behind.”

“You spend a lot of time alone and Although you are happy, you arrive at the hotel and you are alone. You have tough defeats and difficult moments and the same thing, you arrive at the hotel and you can’t share it with anyone. You can’t vent. There are many good things, but along the way, during the process, there are difficult moments, you spend a lot of time traveling, away, you miss many important moments with your family and your loved ones,” he analyzed. “In addition, it is very difficult for it turns out well for you. Only a privileged few are capable of reaching the top to be able to enjoy and live tennis.“. Carla Suárez’s partner, the soccer player Olga García, does however want her daughters to be tennis players. “I have it very clear. I want them to be tennis players,” the player indicated in the program I want to be like.

From the outside, everything is very beautiful, but behind the luxuries hides that uncomfortable truth. “‘Hard’ may be a strong adjective, because it is hard to get up at four in the morning to go to work. Our life is very beautiful, but there are a thousand difficulties. You are alone, far from home and friends, travel, fatigue, time differences,” former Italian top-10 Fabio Fognini told the magazine L’Ultimo Oumo in 2023, another who does not want any of his three children pick up a racket. “There are many moments that fans don’t see. Those who are close to us, those who follow us, do know how hard it is. And you have to get used to those things from a young age.“.

Nacho Encabo is a sports editor at Relevo, a specialist in tennis and the Olympic Games. Born in Madrid, he studied Journalism and Audiovisual Communication at the Rey Juan Carlos University and began as an intern in the sports section of El Mundo in 2011. Knowing German shortly after opened the doors of the dpa agency, where he worked as a special envoy to the 2012 London Olympic Games and the 2014 Sochi Winter Games, the 2016 Euro Cup in France and the 2018 World Cup in Russia. In addition, adding Relay and the rest of his career, he has covered the four Grand Slams of tennis, the Davis Cup , athletics world championships, Formula 1 Grand Prix and countless LaLiga and Champions League matches. He has also worked as a reporter at El Independiente and traveled to the Tokyo Olympics on the Spanish Olympic Committee team. …

  • Roger Federer

  • Rafael Nadal

2024-02-15 13:46:43
#tennis #players #dont #children #pick #racket #Relief


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