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Enrico Becuzzi (Foto: Carl Bialik)

Enrico Becuzzi: ”Don’t call me a hero”

The journeyman Enrico Becuzzi is a well-known figure on the challenger circuit and tennisfans all over the world as well as his colleagues on the tour love him for his dedication and passion for the sport. Alessandro Motti, a close friend of Enrico, helped us setting this interview up and we thank the italian doubles specialist for his humble gesture.
 
Read more: Our previous piece on Enrico Becuzzi (Originally written by Carl Bialik)
 
You travel around the world to compete in a very high competitive sport and even though you face a lot of adversity in your journey, what makes you continue to play tennis in such an age?
 
– I don’t care a lot about my age, I stopped many times to play seriously so I feel fresh. I have some targets and I work hard to get them!
 
Please describe the funding and the economical aspect of your profession, how can you afford to travel around the world to compete in tournaments that don’t have high amounts of prize money?
 
– I do what I can do really, I don’t go over my limits. There are many players traveling much more than me anyway, you can see them playing every week, that is not the case with me.
 
I hope that you continue to play tennis for many more years professionally but how long do you think you will be able to compete on the tour?
 
– I go to the court everyday trying to improve some aspects of my game, when I will see I cannot do it anymore, this will be the time.
 
What do you do when you are not playing tennis?
 
– When I come back home from training I have to organize my private things, my house. I listen to rock/heavy metal!
 
You play a lot of doubles with Paolo Lorenzi, a legend on the challenger tour. He is a close friend of yours and seems to be a very humble person, does he help you with your tennis?
 
– Paolo is a big player and a fantastic person. When I practise and play doubles with him I force myself to give my best and more. He helped me very much when I decided to start playing again in 2011!
 
What do you think about the current amount of prize money in future and challenger level, should ITF increase it and prevent gambling scandals for example?
 
– ITF will update price money in 2016, adding hospitality in 2017 and this is very good for all players, I hope to be able to enjoy it.
 
What are your strengths in your game would you say?
 
– I’m trying to cure all aspects of my game, especially my serve, forehand and legs movement. I see a range of improvement!
 
There is a lot of tennis players that sees you as a source of inspiration because of your passion for the game,
what is it about the sport that you love so much?
 
– I love to compete and just to be a part of that! 
 
What do you think about the mental aspect in the game, do you feel you can improve it and how difficult is it to be playing on the tour knowing that you have to win in order to not lose a lot of money and to stay in the tournament?
 
– I try to do everything I need to prepare and play a tournament. When i’m on court, for the match, I only think about giving max and if it’s not enough, I will accept that and restart again.
 
Which players on the tour do you look up to?
– I like Roger Federer very much for his class and for his foot quickness, I come from another era tough so I admired players like Ivan Lendl and Boris Becker. My sports idol has always been Larry Bird!
 
Myself and many people that I know of sees you as a hero on the tour that is playing for the passion and not for the money that is the case in many kinds, your thoughts on that?
 
– Thanks but i’m not a hero! I’m only doing what I like and what I wanted to do when I was younger. Heroes are persons saving lives.
 
What do you look at when you decide to play tournaments on the tour, prices, ranking points, facilities, etc.
– I try to play tournaments where there is a chance for me to get in and to play doubles, obviously if it’s in Italy it’s better!
   
When you decide to quit playing tennis, will you still be working in the sport, coaching for example?
 
– I don’t like to plan projects about my life, I think it doesn’t work for me. I will decide when the time is right.

About Alex Theodoridis

Alex Theodoridis
Tennisfrälst Spånga-bo som är extra svag för Challengertouren. Ser upp till Rafael Nadal men missar inte en match när Radek Stepanek är inblandad.Enrico Becuzzi är och kommer alltid förbli en hjälte för mig. Finns på Twitter!

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