The desire to play on the biggest stage against the top players is what motivates rising American star Frances Tiafoe to put in the hard work. The American appears to be set for a breakthrough season after reaching his maiden Grand Slam quarter-final at Melbourne Park last month.
The 21-year-old stunned 2017 Nitto ATP Finals champion Grigor Dimitrov in the Australian Open round-of-16 but stood no chance against 17-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal at Rod Laver Arena in the quarter-final. Tiafoe came close to picking up a huge upset win over record 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer at Arthur Ashe Stadium at the US Open in 2017 -- but fell just short as the Swiss edged out the American in a five-setter.
"That's what I want. That's why I work. That's why I wake up every morning. I want to play on the big courts and I want to play on the big courts for many years. I like those priceless moments. It's easy to play matches there.
It's easy to get hyped for it and people getting pumped for you. That feeling is irreplaceable. I've always extremely loved it. I'm more comfortable there than maybe playing on the outside court with two people watching," Tiafoe exclusively told the Washington City Paper.
Tiafoe, who is now enjoying his career-high ranking of No. 30 in the world, will likely get many chances this year to play against the top players.