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Interview with Brian Battistone

Interview with Brian Battistone

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by Andre Smith

Brian Battistone, ranked 128 with the ATP and on tour right now in Europeand Asia. He was born in Santa Barbara, CA. and resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. In 2007 he turned pro. He is coached by Mark Battistone and Lionel Burt. Brian has a brother Dann Battistone that is also on the ATP Pro Tour and ranked 374 in doubles.
I would like to welcome Brain Battistone.

Andre Christopher Smith. Brian, obviously as the 145th current ranking that you hold in 2010, how did you feel about your game? Brian Battistone. I am feeling good, particularly during this latest trip to Europe which has enabled me to build upon some good results I had in the States before coming here.

I did not have many points to defend from last year during this time, so each week has been helping to move my ranking in the right direction. Andre Christopher Smith. The way things have gone the last few tournaments for you, do you feel that playing singles or doubles in the stronger for you? Brian Battistone. Definitely the doubles!! I still really enjoy playing singles whenever possible but my results have not been very good compared to the doubles...

Partly due to the fact that I only get to play once every few weeks or so. If I am doing well in the main draw of doubles at one tournament, it makes it hard to make it in time to play singles qualifying of the next event. Andre Christopher Smith. Was there anything you could have done differently in tournament you just completed? Brian Battistone. I feel that because I have been playing with different partners each week, you somewhat have to learn on the fly about how to best compliment each other's games.

At the same time it is important to focus on doing what you do best. For example, I'd say that I probably would like to have adapted sooner to some of the challenges we faced in our last match and then stick to what was working.

In doubles, things happen very quickly and you need to be able to adjust quickly as well. Andre Christopher Smith. What is your next tournament and how do you see your game as you go into the tournament? Brian Battistone. After Rimini I will be traveling to Poznan, Poland and then I will come back to Italy to a Challenger in Cordenons.

I feel confident with my game and i like playing in Italy! Andre Christopher Smith. What is your traveling schedule looking like for the remainder of the 2010 year? Brian Battistone. I plan to spend the majority of the rest of the year here in Europe, with the goal of getting my doubles ranking into a position to consistently enter the bigger ATP events and Grand Slams.

Europe is the ideal place to build up points with a great number of Challenger tournaments and ease of travel between countries. Andre Christopher Smith. Which of the tournaments coming up in your schedule for 2010 are you feeling good about? And which tournaments in the remainder of 2010 are you feeling apprehensive about? Brian Battistone. Honestly, I feel good about all of them! In past years I might have said that I was a little more apprehensive to play on the clay, however, I feel very comfortable now and have had good results on all surfaces.

Andre Christopher Smith. In regards to your tennis career and your personal life, how much social life do you have? Brian Battistone. At this stage in my career I am very appreciative of the opportunities that this lifestyle provides me to visit different places that I would otherwise most likely never have the chance to see.

To meet new people from week to week, and experience the differences in culture and language, etc. is easily one of the most rewarding parts of being a tennis player for me. Andre Christopher Smith. As most tennis professionals do when they reach a certain point in their career they will develop a relationship with an organization/cause to help others.

Do you have any organizations/causes that you support since you have become an ATP Professional? Brian Battistone. I have not officially become associated with any one group or cause since becoming a professional but I embrace and support any effort to help others.

Andre Christopher Smith. What type of support do you give the organization/cause within your career schedule? Brian Battistone. My main objective is to be always make myself available to the people with whom I interact on a daily basis and to try be of service in any way possible.

Andre Christopher Smith. What's your biggest motivation in your career right now? Brian Battistone. Sports have always been a big part of my life. I play tennis because it brings me great joy. My biggest motivation is to enjoy life and encourage others do the same.

Andre Christopher Smith. When you kind of signed on to be a pro tennis player and really decided to dedicate all your time to it, did you think that the exposure would be so overwhelming? And what do you think about that? Brian Battistone. My history of becoming a professional tennis player is probably one of the more unconventional stories out there.

I did not commit full-time to do this until I was almost 28 years old and am now at my highest ranking ever after almost 3 years on tour. There has been a lot of attention (positive and negative) given to my racket and style of play but I enjoy every aspect of the challenge.

Andre Christopher Smith. Much has been said and written about the state of men's tennis in America. What state do you think it's in and how much pressure is there on the likes of you and other players? Brian Battistone. I do not really fall within that category but i think that there are some very good signs in American tennis with the rise of players like Sam Querrey and John Isner in the past year or two.

Both of these guys have proven that they are capable of staying at the top and are also good role models for the rest of the youth coming up.
Andre Christopher Smith. In closing what advice would you give to the youth getting into tennis with the aspirations to develop a career in tennis or the tennis industry itself? Brian Battistone. Everyone has there own unique abilities and talents.

My advice would be to search to identify what your strengths are, and what you feel most passionately about. From there you can truly commit yourself to improvement because you will continue to work hard and persevere through even the toughest of times.
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