Challenger At Home: Marcos Giron
Marcos Giron talks about life with his girlfriend in San Diego, how an assault bike is keeping him in shape, the movie he can't stop watching and why he's itching to get back on tour. The 26-year-old American also answers questions from fans and is grilled with a quarantine edition of Rapid Fire...
Marcos Giron can taste it. No, we're not talking about the grilled shrimp burrito from the Taco Stand in his native Los Angeles. Sitting at a career-high No. 102 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, Giron remains on the precipice of fulfilling one of his career ambitions. It's right there for the 26-year-old. When the balls start flying once again, there is no doubt that Giron will be ready.
"Last year was a huge breakout year for me, starting outside the Top 300 and being able to go to No. 102," said Giron. "I'm on the cusp of breaking through and playing more ATP Tour events. When the tour comes back, I'm going to be hungry to go. I'm in the prime of my career, I'll be prepared and I'm positioned well."
After entering the 2019 season outside the Top 300 of the FedEx ATP Rankings, the Southern California native found his best tennis in the 12 months to follow. His campaign was bookended by a pair of ATP Challenger Tour titles in Orlando and Houston and included a deep run at the BNP Paribas Open, where he scored his first Top 30 win over Alex de Minaur.
It was in the Houston Challenger final that Giron scored the comeback of the year, saving six match points to stun Ivo Karlovic, rallying from 1/6 down in the deciding tie-break. The victory would secure his spot in a fourth straight Grand Slam main draw at the 2020 Australian Open.
Giron has been staying with his girlfriend in San Diego since March. Taking in the pristine weather and enjoying time with loved ones has taken priority over the past few months. The former UCLA standout admits that this experience has given him a new appreciation for the moments with those closest to him.
"I think it's a good time to go back to the ones you love and spend time with them. As tennis players, you're not always able to do that. To be able to appreciate what we have is important. With tennis, you're always on the road and sleeping in a different bed.
"My goal is to be as prepared as possible for tennis to resume. It's been involving a lot more running and using the assault bike, so I can improve my endurance and speed... I just miss the battle on tour. The highs are high and the lows can be low. Being able to have a hard-fought match and coming out on top is what I miss most."