Tennis - Former World No. 4 James Blake says that the transition from professional tennis to a domestic life has been an unbelievable experience for him. Speaking to CTPost.com, Blake, who is now the Tournament Director at the Miami Open, says, “Fatherhood is unbelievable.
I’ve made the great transition from selfish professional tennis player to selfless parent. It’s not about me anymore. The sacrifices now are ones I want to make for the kids”. Blake continues to remain involved with tennis - he is a commentator for the Tennis Channel and is also on the Board of Directors at the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Foundation, besides being the Tournament Director at the Miami Open.
Blake says his prior experience as a tennis player has helped him in his job as Tournament Director in Miami and he relies on close friendships with other Tournament Directors such as former Pilot Pen and Connecticut Open Tournament Director Anne Worcester.
"I bring all my knowledge as a player and what players need to the task. I’m fortunate to have Stephen Ross and the Miami Dolphins and Executive Director Adam Barnett as a partner. Anne Worcester is someone I count on.
She’s the best tournament director I know. She made the job look easy all these years in New Haven. Now I know how hard she worked. When I have an issue, I know I can call Anne. She gives me a big laugh and then her advice solves the problem”.
Blake continues to compete in professional tennis on the seniors' circuit. He was in the New Haven seniors event and went down to Mark Philippoussis 4-6 in the semi-finals of the event. "For me, tennis is fun when it’s competitive.
The most fun for me is when I’m competing. Or if I’m hitting with younger tennis players who are eager to learn. To just hit balls for exercise is just a means to an end”. Tommy Haas defeated Andy Roddick 6-2 in the other semi-final before then beating Philippoussis, 6-4.