Italy have had an incredible season in 2020 on the men's side with the help of stars such as Matteo Berrettini and Fabio Fognini and the rise of 18-year-old Jannik Sinner. There are currently eight players in the Top 100 of the world rankings on the men's side.
And Adriano Panatta, one of the best Italian players in history, and Riccardo Piatti, one of the more famous coaches from Italy, reflect on the rise of Italian men's tennis in 2020 in an interview to Sportweek. Panatta says, "The talent and having found people who made it happen.
I met so many players who played very well but didn't arrive. Talent alone is not enough." Piatti says, "We are not here to solve the problems but to create them. I once asked Sinner who is the best coach in the world.
He replied that it was me. I told him it was himself. I only give him the means to solve problems, even in the matches. This year I made a lot of effort to find the wild cards for him to play. They were problems that he then had to solve.
What I like is to take them like children and make them grow. I brought him here five years ago. At the beginning he was at Luca's house, one of our teachers, his wife cared for him and his two sons and the dog kept him company.
The principle of our center is to teach the correct technique. Sinner has worked very hard on this aspect." Panatta is also a big fan of the young Sinner but says one should not put too much pressure or expectations on his shoulders.
"He is a special case. When I see him play but also talk I think he is 30, not 18. Next year will come in the top 20." Berrettini, who has risen through the ranks this year, is also a big fan of Sinner, "It's awesome, I didn't even have an ATP point at 18!
It's amazing how he plays and how he invests in what he's doing. This is his best quality. Now we have to leave him calm because he is young, but the pressure I can feel is different from his "