Italian tennis star Fabio Fognini, 32, admits there were times where he was feeling more like playing football than tennis. Fognini, ranked at No. 11 in the world, says football is his favorite sport but he is grateful for the life tennis has given to him.
The Italian has had a nice career as he is a nine-time ATP champion and former world No. 9. Fognini, who has earned just less than $15 million over the course of his career, achieved his career-best result last year when he claimed his maiden Masters title in Monte Carlo.
"My first passion was football. There were times I rather play football than tennis but it is tough to say that when tennis gave me this life. It is difficult because tennis is a job now, not a sport," Fognini said in his contribution post for Behind The Racquet.
"Football is my favorite sport and I watch as much as I can. It was when I was younger when I decided tennis was for me. Football was amazing but tennis gave me the responsibility I wanted. If I lose it is on me just like it is if I win”.
After a career-best season on the Tour in 2019, Fognini made a slow start to this season as he wasn't playing his best tennis before the Tour was suspended. The Italian made the round-of-16 at the Australian Open before he picked up three consecutive losses. Fognini ended his three-match losing just days before the suspension when he beat Duckhee Lee in a Davis Cup match.