Janko Tipsarevic spoke about what makes tennis special. The Serb admitted that there are a lot of sacrifices to be made in order to compete at the highest level, but he also admitted: "I think it's incredibly ungrateful for me to say that this sport is tough.
Because if you would speak to every single athlete, whether this is chess, golf, volleyball, soccer, basketball, they would point out that their particular sport is incredibly tough, incredibly hard. But the one thing that I really genuinely feel is that this sport, because it's an individual sport and you're alone, a lot of the time you're alone, you're traveling around the world.
And you start from -- most of us start from very humble beginnings. And then the way the system is made that nothing, financial recognition, points, nothing is guaranteed. For everything that you achieve you have to grind and dig and fight.
The one thing that I see is that this sport really, really makes you fucking tough. I don't know a champion or a good player in this sport that has achieved greatness that is not tough, not only on the tennis court, but as a person outside of the tennis court.
Now, I can vouch for Novak Djokovic because I know him close and personally. But I feel because the sport is made in such a way is that by default it has to make you tough, not only on the court when you're facing a breakpoint on 4-All, but also later on.
How do you translate the toughness which you achieved 10, 12, 15, 16, 17 years on tour later on in being a parent, being a son, being business owner or whatever? If I would have a time machine to go back, and you're asking me what would I change, Nenad pointed it out a bit, he said it joking-wise, but it actually is true: I would change my arrogant and pretentious behavior from the moment that I was the No.
1 junior in the world until I started playing my best tennis on the senior tour. The reason for this was because, as Viktor pointed out, I was No. 1 under 12, later on in Europe and in the world No. 1 under 14, 16, and 18, and I felt invincible because I was playing with boys."