© AFP/Getty Images

Nicolas Almagro played on the ATP Tour for 16 years, rising to a career-high No. 9 in the FedEx ATP Rankings.

Almagro: One Year After His Farewell To Tennis

The Spaniard announced his retirement on 8 April 2019

A little more than 12 months ago ago, Spain’s Nicolas Almagro ended one chapter of his life in order to focus on family duties. Speaking from his hometown of Murcia, during the COVID-19 global pandemic, the former World No. 9 talks about his post-playing life.

How are you coping with quarantine?
Very well, relaxed at home with the two children [Nico and Leo]. We’re fine, learning things, and above all, respecting the rules of confinement so that we can go outside as soon as possible.

It’s now been a year since you announced your retirement…
Now I have a peaceful life; a family life with my wife and my children. But also, as much as possible, I try to help at tournaments like Acapulco, where I went to join the team. I’m also doing my bit for a series of players who have asked me to help them make it as professionals.

At the Abierto Mexicano Telcel presentado por HSBC in Acapulco you were able to enjoy a different outlook on tennis.
Yes, I spoke to Raul Zurutuza, the Tournament Director, and I was commenting on matches, helping with sponsors... It was fun.

In addition to tournaments, we mustn’t forget you are helping young players with their games.
I’m helping three US players between 15 and 18 years of age, with the intention of helping them progress. They contacted me to work together and I liked the idea. I decided to start with them, but the current situation we are going through means we haven’t been able to get the project going yet.

ATP Heritage: Milestones. Records. Legends.

What is it you miss the most about the ATP Tour?
The adrenaline of competition. You go from one hundred to zero and that is probably the thing you miss the most. It’s not something I think about too much though, I have a new adrenaline now, which is learning to educate my two kids and I’m pretty busy with that.

Your routine has changed completely.
You miss the travelling, because every week we would go from one place to another and you miss that. But before I couldn’t be at home for more than two weeks in a row and now I can. Also, I’m watching my children grow up, helping at home... It’s a different kind of life that I hope to enjoy just as much as my career in sport.

When you sit down with friends and reminisce about stories from the tour, which is the one that comes up most?
What we remember are the moments we have shared together: the three Roland Garros quarter-finals with Rafa [Nadal] and the [2012] final of the Davis Cup in Prague... These are the moments that they were lucky to experience close up, and they always say that if they didn’t know me they would probably never have seen it.

You will also provide role model for your children to follow at home…
It will take a while longer with them, because they are still very small. But I’m sure that in the future they’ll ask, and with my wife I’ll be able to show them what their Dad did in his playing career.

 

Would you like to see them on the court some day?
I would like them to be happy. I’ll be by their side being their father, supporting them 100 per cent in everything I can, and, if they decide to be tennis players, I will welcome it. I will try to help, but it won’t be me who is 100 per cent running their career. They will have their coach and their teacher at first. You have to be patient, and if they want to be tennis players then they can be. But I will support them equally in whatever they want to do.

 

Even though it is impossible to go back, were you satisfied when you retired, or do you have any regrets?
I left very satisfied. I retired at the time I wanted to. I didn’t feel fit enough to play anymore. I decided to step aside. I had a very successful career. Could it have been better? Of course. Could it have been worse? That too. It was my way of living my life, of enjoying myself and I think that, in the end, I achieved much more than I ever dreamed of.

Download ATP Tour App

More stories like this in: