Sébastien Lareau, the 1999 US Open men's doubles champion, spoke about his admiration for tennis legend Roger Federer as well as the current generation of Canadian tennis in an interview to La Presse. Speaking about the Big Three in men's tennis, Lareau, who practised with Roger Federer at the Olympic Games in Sydney where he won gold in doubles with Daniel Nestor while the Swiss lost the bronze medal match in singles.
“He was 40th , 50th in the world, but we already knew he would be among the best in the world. I always liked his style of play." He says he also admires Novak Djokovic and has learned to love Rafael Nadal over time.
Sébastien Lareau on Roger Federer
Speaking about the current state of Canadian tennis, Lareau says, "It's a lot of a change of mentality. We did not necessarily feel at home in this big world. We were a bit like outsiders.
I think that Félix [Auger-Aliassime] and Denis [Shapovalov], after having won everything in the juniors, felt dominant when they arrived at the pros. Same thing for Bianca [Andreescu] and Eugenie [Bouchard]. " Lareau is now a coach - he was working with Christopher Heck, an 18-year-old from Ontario, just prior to the tennis shutdown and says he loves his new role.
"As soon as I got back on the court, I felt like I belonged. It looked like I had never left. He works super well, he is super intense, dedicated. He has a great team around him. His physical trainer in Florida is very good.
It was serious. That's why I wanted to get involved with him. I don't want to go with anyone and just babysit. " It's sure that the game has evolved, notes the new coach. The players are more powerful, strike faster in parallel, change directions faster.
But it's still tennis." Sébastien Lareau reached a career-high doubles ranking of world No. 4 and won 16 doubles titles on the ATP Tour. His victories included the 1996 and 1998 Stuttgart Masters, the 1999 London Queen's Club International Series, the 1999 US Open, the 1999 Paris Indoor Tennis Masters, and the 1999 ATP Doubles Championships events, all partnering Alex O'Brien; and the 2000 Montreal/Toronto Tennis Masters and Sydney Olympics, partnering compatriot Daniel Nestor. Roger Federer is the most successful player in men's tennis history - having won 20 Grand Slam singles titles.