Kazakh tennis player Mikhail Kukushkin reveals he started playing tennis at the age of six and his only dream was to becoame professional tennis player. In the beginning, Kukushkin was coached by his father as they were in a tough spot financially and they were doing all they could to help Mikhail pursue his dream of becoming a professional tennis player one day.
"I started playing tennis when I was six years old. My father at that time was my coach. He took me to the court and he taught me many things. He trained me until I was 17. My family did not have much money, so I did not have many opportunities because I lived in a very small town where there was hardly any life.
During all my childhood I only had a dream, to become a professional tennis player," Kukushkin told Behind The Racquet, as revealed on Punto de Break.
Kukushkin reflects on the darkest period of his career
"If there is a moment in my life, in my professional career that I suffered a lot, it was in 2018.
I got divorced that year," Kukushkin revealed. "It was a moment.very hard for me. Many fights and many conversations with lawyers. Some days and even weeks I could not sleep and could hardly concentra on training. "I remember going to an ATP tournament and entering a grass court without any preparation.
It is the worst feeling for a player who is dedicated to tennis. At the end of that year, I had one of my best results. That helped me a lot in clearing myself. "Tennis evaded me from my personal problems. When you play an official tournament you just concentrate on tennis.
I liked to play at those times because it was the little time I had to forget everything that was around me." Kukushkin captured his maiden ATP title at the St. Petersburg Open in 2010 and in 2019 he achieved his career-high ranking of No. 39 in the world.