In a candid interview world No. 9 Janko Tipsarevic talks about growing up in war-torn Serbia, his limitations and his views on Indian tennis
Posted On Saturday, January 07, 2012 at 09:02:53 AM
Chennai: Janko Tipsarevic is nothing like most players on the Tour. He reads philosophy, which, with all due respect to athletes, is pretty rare. German philosophers Arthur Schopenhauer and Friedrich Nietzsche, and Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky form his reading list. They also find a place in ink on his body. But let’s skip that. The ATP rep says he doesn’t like talking about that.
Growing up in war-torn Yugoslavia, perhaps? “I don’t think I am going to give you a sad story about my family not having any money and being poor,” the world number nine says. Hmmm… next question. “By the way, all of that is true.”
Tipsarevic was one of the first players to come up after a drought of athletes, among other things, that hit the country in the last decade of the 20th century. “Tennis, when I was growing up in Serbia was completely dead. You know, war, bad politicians,” he says. The last known tennis player from the country was Slobodan Zivojinovic, who now also heads the Serbian tennis federation.
“There was no one to guide me, to tell me what should I do, except for my father, who was a physical education professor in high school,” he talks of his father Pavel.
It was in a Belgrade swimming pool that Tipsarevic practiced his tennis, while a few, including Novak Djokovic, he says, moved to other countries to practice. “Novak went to, I think, Germany, Ana Ivanovic went to Switzerland, some went to America but I stayed back,” the 27-year-old says.
* * * * * * *
And by the way, he wears glasses while playing because those are prescription lenses and not sunglasses he wears for fun. One learns it the hard way. Another thing he doesn’t like being asked. The ATP rep was a little late to inform about that.
For the whole interview – CLICK HERE